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Five Lifestyle Changes to Help Improve Hot Flashes

brunette middle-aged womanHot flashes are one of the most common symptoms of menopause. The uncomfortable sensation affects more than two-thirds of North American women for an average of seven years. While we don’t know exactly what causes hot flashes, they may be related to changes in circulation or estrogen levels. Here are some lifestyle changes we recommend that may help to cool hot flashes.

Wear lightweight clothing
Dressing in layers (i.e., tank tops and cardigans) will allow you to shed heavier clothing when a hot flash strikes. Wearing moisture-wicking clothing to bed can also help you stay comfortable overnight.

Drink ice water
Drinking cold water regularly can help regulate your body temperature. It is imperative to avoid dehydration, especially if you are experiencing hot flashes.

Avoid common triggers
Common triggers for hot flashes include the consumption of alcohol, caffeine, and spicy food. Consider only enjoying these in moderation or removing them from your diet entirely.

Maintain a healthy weight
Women who are overweight or obese tend to have hot flashes that are greater in frequency and severity.

Stop smoking
A recent study found that heavy smokers were four times more likely to have hot flashes.

Determining how to address your menopausal symptoms can be challenging and personal. Whether you are in need of menopause treatment, birth control options or a routine health screening, contact us about women’s health services in Dallas, TX.

Four Benefits of Participating in a Clinical Trial

female doctor consulting with patientWhen patients are presented with the option of participating in a clinical trial, a common question we hear is “Why should I take part in a treatment that researchers are not sure will work?” While this is a good question, those who take part in a clinical trial can expect numerous benefits.

Early access to new treatments
The treatment you can gain access to as part of a clinical trial may be more effective or have fewer side effects than those currently available to the public.

Treatment may be low-cost (or even free)
In exchange for your participation, some clinical trials may pay for part or all of your treatment, travel, and other expenses made during the study. It is imperative to discuss all details regarding cost with your physician before you agree to be part of a clinical trial in Dallas, TX.

Regular attention from top medical professionals
When you take part in a clinical trial, you will have the opportunity to receive attention from some of the nation’s top doctors and scientists. With their close monitoring, you can have peace of mind that any side effects that you may experience will be identified and addressed immediately.

The chance to help others by contributing to medical research
Many of today’s cancer treatments are available because large numbers of patients agreed to participate in clinical trials to test them. Even if you don’t directly benefit from the results of the trial you take part in, the resulting research can help others and contributes to scientific knowledge.

Diabetes Remains a Major Health Concern in the U.S.

senior woman with glucometerDiabetes and prediabetes are two of the most prevalent and preventable health conditions. Today, approximately 30 million Americans have diabetes, and about 90 percent of these individuals are affected by Type 2 diabetes. This means that their bodies produce insulin, but cannot use it effectively. Many more adults – about 86 million – are prediabetic, meaning that while they have not been diagnosed with diabetes, their blood sugar level is currently elevated.

Most people think of insulin injections and blood sugar tests when they hear the word diabetes, but the reality is much worse. Diabetes is the seventh most common cause of death in the United States. Co-morbidities include everything from heart attack and stroke to infections caused by poor wound healing. In severe cases, diabetes can cause blindness, kidney damage, and loss of toes or limbs due to poor circulation or nerve damage.

Individuals with diabetes or prediabetes are more likely to have high blood pressure and be overweight. Many people can control their blood sugar by exercising and making healthy lifestyle changes or by taking medication. However, bariatric surgery, gastric bypass, gastric bands, and medical weight loss programs are also recommended.

The physicians at our wellness clinic in Dallas, TX, agree that medical weight loss procedures are especially helpful for adults with a body mass index of 35 or more. Being proactive is the best way to maintain healthy blood sugar levels and to help your body respond to the insulin it produces.

Are You Sitting Too Much? How to Stay Active throughout the Work Day

male professional at work deskIf you are like most office workers, you spend the majority of your workday seated at a desk. However, a recent health study revealed that sitting too much is one of the worst things we can do for our health. The physicians at our clinic for medical weight loss in Dallas, TX, know that those with sedentary lifestyles are more susceptible to obesity, diabetes, and even heart disease. Consider the following tips to help incorporate movement into your day.

Change Your Routine
If you need to speak with a coworker, walk to their office or desk instead of using phone or email. Try parking further away from the entrance, and get in the habit of using the stairwell instead of the elevator. If you normally eat at your desk, use lunchtime as an opportunity to walk to the cafeteria or a nearby lunch spot.

Set a Reminder to Move
Set a reminder on your email calendar or phone to get up, move around, and stretch every hour. Use this time to grab water or go for a quick walk throughout the building.

Track Your Steps
Wearable tech such as FitBits, Apple Watches, and the like are all equipped with step counters. Set your goal and stick to it! If you don’t own one of these activity trackers, a simple pedometer will do.

Pace When Possible
Phone calls and conference meetings don’t always have to be sitting activities. There’s no need to sit while talking, and moving around may even help with stimulating ideas.

Avoiding the Flu: Part 2

ill man coughing into his handIn our last post, we discussed some key ways to avoid catching influenza. Here are some additional tips from our healthcare clinic in Dallas, TX, to help protect yourself and others this flu season.

Don’t shake hands during flu season.
New acquaintances will appreciate you saying, “Please forgive me for not shaking your hand; I haven’t been feeling well.”

Cough or sneeze into your elbow.
As you could imagine, coughing or sneezing directly into your palm is a quick way to make your hands a host full of germs. Get into the habit of using your elbow instead, and encourage others to do the same.

Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
Touching your face after touching something that is contaminated with germs or a virus is a common way to get sick.

Maintain a supply of tissues, hand sanitizer, and cough drops.
Even if you aren’t sick, you can still protect yourself and others by keeping these items on-hand.

Disinfect regularly.
An efficient and inexpensive way to prevent the spread of illness is by using disinfectant wipes, especially when someone nearby is already ill. Focus on items you touch often, such as your phone, door handles, the remote control, tables, and computers

Avoiding the Flu: Part I

washing hands with soap and running waterOutdoor temperatures are continuing to drop, which means cold and flu season is upon us. The CDC estimates that up to one-fifth of the US population will get the flu this season, so it is crucial to be prepared. The following are some tips from our care clinic in Dallas, TX, to help you and your family stay healthy and avoid the flu this season.

Get the flu shot.
Seasonal flu vaccines protect against the three most common influenza viruses. Not only are you protecting yourself by getting the flu shot, but you are also being considerate of others.

Wash your hands properly several times a day.
This may seem like a no-brainer, but you would be surprised at how many people do not wash their hands when they should. Even the Start button on the office copier is enough to bring you in contact with the flu virus. Wash your hands several times a day with soap and warm water for 15 seconds.

Encourage sick coworkers or classmates to stay home.
Some people hesitate to take sick days, even if they are truly ill. Whether you are a leader or a peer, you can encourage others to stay home when they are contagious.