Tuesday, April 3, 2012

SIGNIFICANCE OF FEET ...!!!!
Your feet are good for more than walking.
They can tell volumes about your health.
Here are few signs through which a physician can diagnose disease factors prevailing inside your body.

1. Cold Feet, Many Culprits
If your toes are always cold, one reason could be poor blood flow -- a circulatory problem sometimes linked to smoking, high blood pressure, or heart disease. The nerve damage of uncontrolled diabetes can also make your feet feel cold to you. Other possible causes include hypothyroidism and anemia.
2. Foot Pain
When your feet ache after a long day, you might just curse your shoes. After all, eight out of 10 women say their shoes hurt. But pain that’s not due to sky-high heels may come from a stress fracture, a small crack in a bone. One possible cause: Exercise that was too intense, particularly high-impact sports like basketball and distance running. The weakened bones of osteoporosis increase your risk.
3. Red, White, and Blue Toes
Raynaud’s disease can cause your toes to turn white, then bluish, and then redden again and return to their natural tone. The cause is a sudden narrowing of the arteries, called vasospasms. Stress or changes in temperature can trigger vasospasms, which usually don’t lead to other health concerns. Raynaud’s may also be related to rheumatoid arthritis, Sj√∂gren’s disease, or thyroid problems.
4. Heel Pain
The most common cause of heel pain is plantar fasciitis, inflammation where this long ligament attaches to the heel bone. The pain may be sharpest when you first wake up and put pressure on the foot. Arthritis, excessive exercise, and poorly fitting shoes also can cause heel pain, as can tendonitis. Less common causes include a bone spur on the bottom of the heel, a bone infection, tumor, or fracture
5. Dragging Your Feet
Sometimes the first sign of a problem is a change in the way you walk -- a wider gait or slight foot dragging. The cause may be the slow loss of normal sensation in your feet, brought on by peripheral nerve damage. About 30% of these cases are linked to diabetes. Nerve damage also can be due to infection, vitamin deficiency, and alcoholism.
6. Clubbed Toes
In clubbing, the shape of the toes (and often the fingers) changes. The nails are more rounded on top and curve downward. Lung disease is the most common underlying cause, but it also can be caused by heart disease, liver and digestive disorders, or certain infections.
7. Swollen Feet
This is usually a temporary change caused by standing too long or a long flight -- especially if you are pregnant. In contrast, feet that stay swollen can be a sign of a serious medical condition. The cause may be poor circulation, a problem with the lymphatic system, or a blood clot. A kidney disorder or underactive thyroid can also cause swelling.
8.Burning Feet
A burning sensation in the feet is common among diabetics with peripheral nerve damage. It can also be caused by a vitamin B deficiency, athlete’s foot, chronic kidney disease, poor circulation in the legs and feet (peripheral arterial disease), or hypothyroidism.
9. Sores That Don't Heal
Foot sores that will not heal are a major warning sign for diabetes. Diabetes can impair sensation in the feet, circulation, and normal wound healing, so even a blister can become a troublesome wound. Those sores also are prone to infection. Diabetics should wash and dry their feet and check them for any wounds every day. Slow-healing of sores also can be caused by poor circulation from conditions such as peripheral artery disease.
10. Pain in the Big Toe
Gout is a notorious cause of sudden pain in the big toe joint, along with redness and swelling .Osteoarthritis is another culprit that causes pain and swelling. If the joint is rigid, it may be hallux rigidus, a complication of arthritis where a bone spur develops. Finally, turf toe is an ailment of athletes, particularly those who play on hard surfaces. It's caused by an injury to ligaments surrounding the joint
11. Pain in the Smaller Toes
If you feel like you're walking on a marble, or if pain burns in the ball of your foot and radiates to the toes, you may have Morton’s neuroma, a thickening of tissue around a nerve, usually between the third and fourth toes. It is eight to 10 times more common in women than in men. It is caused by injury or too much pressure on the toes
12. Itchy Feet
Itchy, scaly skin may be athlete’s foot, a fungal infection that's common in men between the ages of 20 and 40. A reaction to chemicals or skin care products -- called contact dermatitis -- can cause itching, too, along with redness and dry patches. If the skin on your itchy feet is thick and pimple-like, it may be psoriasis, an over-reaction of the immune system. Medicated creams can relieve the symptoms.
13. Claw Toe
This foot deformity can be caused by shoes that are tight and pinch your toes or by a disease that damages nerves, such as diabetes, alcoholism, or other neurological disorder. Your toes will be bent upward as they extend from the ball of the foot, then downward from the middle joint, resembling a claw. They may respond to stretching and exercises of the toes or you may need special shoes or even surgery.
14. Foot Spasms
A sudden, sharp pain in the foot is the hallmark of a muscle spasm or cramp, which can last many minutes. Overwork and muscle fatigue are common causes. Other causes include poor circulation, dehydration, or imbalances in potassium, magnesium, calcium, or vitamin D levels in the body. The changing hormone levels of pregnancy or thyroid disorders may play a role. If spasms are frequent or severe, see a doctor. Strengthening exercises can help with muscle fatigue.
15. Dark Spot on the Foot
We associate skin cancer with the sun, so we’re not as likely to check our feet for unusual spots. However, a melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer, can develop even in areas that are not regularly exposed to the sun. Melanoma can even appear beneath the nail, where it might look like a black spot.
16. Yellow Toenails
Your toenails tell a lot about your overall health. A fungal infection often causes thickened yellow toenails. Thick, yellow nails also can be a sign of an underlying disease, including lymphedema (swelling related to the lymphatic system), lung problems, or rheumatoid arthritis.
18.White Nails
Injury to the nail or illness anywhere in the body can cause white areas in the nails. If part or all of a nail separates from the nail bed (shown here), it can appear white -- and may be due to an injury, nail infection, or psoriasis. If the nail is intact and most of it is white, it can sometimes be a sign of a more serious condition including liver disease, congestive heart failure, or diabetes.
19. Pitting of the Nails
Pitting, or punctured-looking depressions in the surface of the nail, is caused by a disruption in the growth of the nail at the nail plate. It affects as many as half of people with psoriasis.
SKIN - A TRUE MIRROR OF HEALTH...!!!!!
Our skin is the largest epithelial tissue in our body. It protects us from harmful environmental factors such as pollution, ultraviolet light, microbes, and infectious diseases. It is our duty to ensure that whatever we are eating is healthy so that the skin functions properly.
Essential Vitamins & Super Skin Foods
Healthy foods nourish your body with all the vitamins and nutrients it needs in keeping it clear and glowing. Healthy food includes vegetables, fresh fruits, fish, sweet potato, mango, carrot, spinach and all those that are rich in zinc, vitamin A, omega 3, omega 6 and proteins.
Drinking 8 glasses of water or green tea every day also helps cleanse your body from toxins and it makes your skin hydrated all throughout the day especially if the climate is very hot. Never get dehydrated. This will cause your skin to dry up.
Vitamin A
It helps by maintaining and healing the skin epithelial tissue from damage caused by exposure to harmful factors such as the sun’s UV rays. It can also keep our skin strong and firm. Vitamin A also reduces the production of sebum by our sebaceous glands, thus preventing the formation of acne and pimples.
Source = egg yolks, non-fat milk, liver, oysters, fortified cereals, green vegetables, and orange fruits such as papaya, peaches, apricots, mangos, and cantaloupe.
Beta carotene-rich food can also be a good source of vitamin A as the body can convert beta-carotene into vitamin A. All you need is 30mg. of cooked carrots a day. This can also help prevent or reduce redness as well as inflammation caused by sunburn. You can combine it with vitamin E and other carotenoids such as lutein to minimize your skin’s sensitivity to the sun. Aside from carrots, you can also find these vitamins from broccoli, spinach, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, papaya and watermelon.
Vitamin B
This vitamins function by converting calories into good energy that is essential for skin metabolism. It also helps in the maintenance of our skin’s functions which include the production of oil or sebum by the sebaceous glands that keep sour skin moist. This is a very important vitamin if you want to avoid having dry and scaly skin. Vitamin B also helps relieve stress and anxiety which is a causative factor of acne
Source = red meat, poultry, fish, peanut butter, eggs, banana, oatmeal, and whole grains.
Vitamin C
Our skin is made up of many layers. The skin’s supporting structure underneath is called collagen. Vitamin C helps in the maintenance of this collagen when taken orally. Stress and overexposure to the sun can drain out our vitamin C in the skin. That is why vitamin C is commonly incorporated in sunscreens and anti aging creams. Vitamin C is important for tissue repair. It also protects us from disease-causing microorganisms and helps enhance our immunity. Source = citrus fruits or juices, strawberries, green peas, green leafy vegetables, tomato, cantaloupe, and sweet pepper.
Vitamin E
Collagen makes our skin elastic and strong. However, there is an enzyme named collagenase that breaks our collagen down. This leads to skin sagging and wrinkling. Vitamin E fights this by decreasing the production of collagenase.
Source = leafy vegetables, sesame oil, olive oil, legumes, almonds, salmon, avocado, wheat germ, whole grain, and lean meat.
Vitamin K
This vitamin is often incorporated in various cosmetics and skin care products due to its powerful effects on the skin. Vitamin K helps reduce skin pigmentation and discoloration, as well as puffiness and dark circles under the eyes. It is also effective in healing bruises as it specializes in blood clotting.
Selenium
This mineral helps by reducing the damage caused by ultraviolet rays from the sun. This helps minimize the risk of having sunburn.
Source = tuna, sesame seeds, whole grains, and wheat germ.
Copper
This mineral aids the body in producing melanin that is responsible for our skin color. It also helps it produce elastin essential to keep our skin firm.
Source = prunes, nuts, cherries, and tofu.
Zinc
Zinc is a mineral that helps in the maintenance of collagen which keeps the skin firm and elastic. It also links amino acids that are essential in collagen formation and wound healing. It prevents scarring as well as acne formation by controlling the oil producing glands of our skin.
Source = mushrooms, seafood, soybeans, and turkey.
Things that Harm Our Skin
In order to maintain a good looking, glowing skin, there are many things and habits that we need to avoid. One of these is cigarette smoking. Cigarettes contain nicotine and nicotine is harmful to the skin. Other things that one needs to avoid are "bad" foods for the skin which includes anything with caffeine like cola and coffee, alcohol, and fatty foods.
While sun is good for the skin to promote vitamin D, it also contains harmful UV rays that may cause damage to the skin. That is why it is important to avoid too much exposure to the sun or if you really need to go out under the sun, be sure to put on a sun block with an SPF of at least 15 to 30 to protect your skin from its harmful ultraviolet rays.
Effective Daily Facial Care Regimen
Maintaining a daily facial skin care regimen is important in keeping a good-looking skin all the time. First and foremost, always keep your face clean. This means washing your face over with warm water and a mild soap at least twice a day preferably at night before bedtime. This ensures that you will sleep with clean facial pores that will prevent pimples caused by clogged pores to pop out in the morning. Warm water opens up the pores therefore cleanse your face with warm water to clean it. Do not scrub or over wash your face as it may also cause irritation and it will push dirt even deeper into your pores. Just gently wash your face in circular motion. Rinse it with cold water to close your pores after. Remove all make up before going to sleep.
Things to Remember
When in a public area and you do not have enough time to wash your face, just bring with you an oil absorber pad or tissue and pat your oily skin dry. Do not cover dirty, oily skin with makeup or powder, as this will just encourage the breakthrough of pimples.
In addition, always make it a point to change your make up applicator and brushes at least once every two months to ensure that you only touch clean things to your face. Even your fingers should not often touch your face, as hands are usually dirty. You can also scrub your face occasionally with micro beads to scrub off dirt or you may clean your face using a cleanser. Opt for those with salicylic acid content in its ingredients which is usually stated at the back of the product.
Put on a night cream or lotion that will moisturize your skin overnight. During daytime, you can also put on moisturizers preferably those that do not contain fragrance especially for sensitive skin. Alternatively, you can opt for a sun block with moisturizers to protect your skin from the sun at the same time.
Other than all these healthy skin tips, always maintain an 8-hour sleep each and every day. Sleep is essential to having a rejuvenated, glowing skin as it is during sleep that our body repairs our cells. It’s worth remembering that what we do to our bodies, we are bound to do to our skin.