Saturday, April 30, 2016

PQRST Pain Assessment

PQRST Pain Assessment

by: Arlene Gentallan

        The PQRST pain assessment is a tool used by medical professionals to determine and interpret the pain experience of a patient. This assessment tool is valuable because pain is subjective. So only the person having the pain is the best person that can accurately describe what he/she is experiencing. The patient's description of his/her pain provides important clues to the underlying medical condition which medical professionals can then analyze to direct management/treatment and patient care.

Provocation / Palliation
 - What are you doing / what conditions may have contributed to the onset of your pain?
  • <strenous activity, inhaling deeply, ambulation, early morning, pain while at rest>
 - What relieves your pain? (What makes it better?)
 - What aggravates your pain? (What makes it worse?)

 - What does your pain feels like? (Describe your pain.)
  • <intermittent vs. constant, sharp, dull, crushing>

Region / Radiation
 - Where do you feel the pain?
 - Does it extend to other areas of your body?
 - Where other areas of your body does your pain extend?

 - From the scale of 0-10, where 0 is no pain and 10 is the worst possible pain, how do you rate your pain?

 - When did your pain started?
  • (time, date, morning, noon, afternoon, night)
 - How long have your experienced your pain? (constant pain)
 - How long does a pain episode last? (intermittent pain)

Kitchen Remedies to Get Rid of Dark Spots (DIY)

Kitchen Remedies to Get Rid of Dark Spots (Do it yourself)

by: Arlene Gentallan

Dark spots are annoying, and at times embarrassing that we resort to concealers and creams to hide them. But you don't have to settle with artificial means because there's natural and healthy ways to rid these hyperpigmentations off your skin for good.

You can choose from a variety of natural skin lighteners below:

1. Lemon juice
Lemon's citric acid content lightens skin tone and exfoliates dead skin cells. It is also a rich source of Vitamin C.
  • Squeeze fresh lemon juice and apply it directly onto the dark spot. (You can use your bare finger or a cotton ball/applicator.)
  • Allow it to dry for at least 30 minutes before washing with water.
  • Do this treatment twice daily (every morning and night.)
  • You'll usually see positive result in 2 months.
Topical application of concentrated lemon juice can induce a stinging sensation. You can dilute lemon juice with water, rosewater or honey before application to reduce the burning sensation. Be sure to avoid direct sun exposure / use sunscreen.

2. Green Papaya
Papaya contains a natural exfoliants called "alpha-hydroxy acids" and "papain" which rids off dead skin cells. It is also a rich source of Vitamin A. The raw fruit (green colored) contains more papain than it's ripe counterpart (yellow colored.)
  • Rub papaya peel / mashed papaya pulp onto your skin
  • Allow it no more than 5 minutes to stay on your skin then rinse it with water
  • Do this treatment twice daily (every morning and night.)
Watch out if you have an allergy to latex because there is a percentage of these population who are also allergic to papaya and other fruits such as avocado, banana, mango, and pineapple.

3. Virgin Coconut oil, Castor oil, Almond oil, and Olive oil
Virgin coconut oil, castor oil, almond oil, and Olive oil can be applied topically to lighten and even skin tone. These have healing properties (antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal) and prevents skin dryness and irritation.
  • Massage the oil of your preference onto your skin.
  • Do this treatment before going to bed.

4. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera is an excellent moisturizer and skin regenerator. It also has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory action.
  • Apply fresh aloe vera gel/juice directly into the dark spot.
  • Do this treatment twice a day.
  • You'll usually see positive result after about 2-3 weeks.

5. Potato
Potato is not all for french fries, it also has a bleaching property to even your skin color.
  • Put a slice of potato / grated potato over your dark spot.
  • Gently massage it onto your face and let it stay for 15 minutes before rinsing it with water.

6. Buttermilk
Buttermilk contains exfoliants in the form of "lactic acid" and "alpha-hydroxy acids." This allows you to rid off dead pigmented skin cells and replace them with new ones.
  • Apply buttermilk directly into the dark spot

7. Sugar Cubes
Sugar cubes contains "glycolic acid" which acts as an exfoliant. Simply rub a sugar cube into your dark spot.

8. Yogurt
Yogurt isn't just delicious, it's also helps your remove old skin cells to allow young skin cells to surface out. It contains "lactic acid" as it's exfoliant component.
  • Apply yogurt directly into the dark spot.
  • Let it stay there for 30 minutes before rinsing.
  • Use once a day.
You can also combine yogurt with other ingredients like honey for a more enjoyable experience.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

3 Health Benefits of Green Tea you should Know

3 Health Benefits of Green Tea you should Know

The cup of tea you enjoy today has a history dating back to China where it is an integrated part of their culture and lifestyle. Here are the health benefits you get from drinking a cup of green tea:

Green tea is a packed full of poweful antioxidants in the form of polyphenols (such as flavonoids and catechins "epigallocatechin gallate") which fight harmful free radicals. Antioxidant helps our body fight the effects of aging and cell degeneration. This aids the body in combating a myriad of health problems such as:

1. Cancer
2. Cardiovascular disease
3. Alzheimer’s disease
4. Diabestes

Green tea contains such amazing benefits that in fact, it contains a higher amount of antioxidant compared to fruits and vegetables.

Fat Burner
Did you know that a single cup of tea contains only about 2 calories? It also helps your burn fat because it increases your metabolic rate while decreasing your fat absorption.

Wakes you up
Green tea contains caffeine but with only half the amount compared to coffee. Did you know that caffeine is used in medicine for headache? So enjoy a glass of tea to feel refreshed and alert.

Natural Diuretic
It's caffeine content acts as a natural diuretic which helps get rid of toxins and wastes through urination. Green tea contains only half the caffeine content of coffee so it's perfect if you want only minimal diuretic effect. Just don't forget to drink adequate fluids to avoid dehydration.

What is the difference between green tea and black tea?

Both Green Tea and Black Tea are made from the shrub "Camellia sinensis." There difference lies from the way they are processed or made.

Green tea is made by simply heating (steaming) the leaves of Camellia sinensis, then drying it up.

Black tea, on the other hand, is made by first oxidating the leaves of Camellia sinensis before heating and drying. Oxidating the leaves is achieved by rolling or cutting the leaves into pieces. This process exposes the chemicals inside the leaves to oxygen which initiates a chemical reaction which converts catechins into flavanoids -- theaflavins and thearubigins. Because of the oxidation process. black tea has a stronger flavor compared to green tea.

Because green tea is not fully oxidized, it has more catechins and epigallactocatechin gallate (EGCG) than black tea.

According to the The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition:

" tea has more health benefits than an equal volume of black tea in terms of antioxidant capacity."

There are many types of tea, among the best known are:

Green Tea
Black Tea
White Tea
Oolong Tea
Pu-erh Tea
Rooibos Tea
Herbal Tea
Yellow Tea

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Fisetin: Fruits and Vegetables: Memory Enhancer, Anticancer, Liver Protector

Fisetin: Fruits and Vegetables: Memory Enhancer, Anticancer, Liver Protector

There's a lot more to fruits and vegetables than just vitamins and nutrients. But it isn't until the past decade that it's flavanol content has been identified.

Fisetin is a flavonol that's naturally present in fruits and vegetables. There's new studies that gives us convincing and powerful scientific insights into how it works to protect our health.

A variety of fruits and vegetables contains fisetin, including:

Cucumber (skin)


Memory Enhancer
Fesitin enhances memory and promotes long term memory retention.

In a study published on Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS), it was found out that "flavonoid fisetin can activate signaling pathways in hippocampal slices that are implicated in the development of long-term memory." Claiming that "No other flavonoid tested was as effective."

Prevents Memory Loss
Fisetin prevents memory loss in Alzheimer's disease by preventing the aggregation of amyloid plaques and exerting anti-inflammatory effect. According to as study published in Neuroscience Letters:

"Fisetin (3,3′,4′,7-tetrahydroxyflavone) has been found to be neuroprotective, induce neuronal differentiation, enhance memory, and inhibit the aggregation of the amyloid β protein (Aβ) that may cause the progressive neuronal loss in Alzheimer's disease."

Promotes Brain recovery
Fisetin promotes glutathione, an antioxidant that fights free radicals and decreases peroxides. Glutathione is the major antioxidant of the nervous system.

In a study published on National Institutes of Health:

"One of the more important observations to emerge from our study is that flavonoids can be added even after the initial ischemic insult and still provide a significant level of protection. Since treatment of stroke often does not begin until several hours after the initial insult, drugs which have long time windows of efficacy are likely to be the most useful."

This is valuable especially to those who suffered ischemia of the brain like post-stroke patients.

Fights Breast Cancer
Fisetin possess an anticancer property against breast cancel cell in a study published on International Journal of Oncology. Fisetin induces natural cell death of tumor cells while not causing toxicity to normal healthy cells. According to this study:

"These data allow us to propose that fisetin appears as a new potential anticancer agent which can be applied to develop a clinical protocol of human breast cancers."

Protects the Liver from Alcohol toxicity
Fisetin has the potential to protect and restore the liver from acute alcohol-induced hepatotoxicity based in a study published in Neuroscience Letters. This involves an experiment with rats:

"Pre-treatment with fisetin (5 and 10 mg/kg) restored the alcohol-induced alterations in liver function, antioxidant defence, histological changes, mitochondrial respiratory enzymes and matrix metalloproteinases activities."

Natural Analgesic
Fisetin  can relieve diabetic neuropathic pain. In a study published in Neuroscience Letters:

"Chronic treatment of diabetic mice with fisetin not only ameliorated the established symptoms of thermal hyperalgesia and mechanical allodynia, but also arrested the development of neuropathic pain when given at low doses."

Note: The above studies are done using animal subjects.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Caffeine Not Recommended for Hypertensives

Caffeine Not Recommended for Hypertensives

Caffeine consumption can lead to stiffening of aorta and temporary blood pressure elevation.

In a study headed by Dr. Charalambos Vlachopoulos (Department of cardiology, Athens Medical School, Greece), 10 participants were given either a placebo or 250 mg (equivalent to 2-3 cups of coffee). They've found out that aside from caffeine's effect in raising both systolic and diastolic blood pressure, it also resulted in aortic stiffening which they've determined through measurement of carotid–femoral pulse wave velocity (PWV.)

Aorta is the major blood vessel that pumps blood away from the heart to circulate to various tissues and organs of the body. It's stiffening will result to retention of blood in the left ventricle (the heart's major pumping chamber.) This will lead to less volume of blood that's able to circulate and supply the body with oxygen and nutrients while the heart works harder to pump blood.

Caffeine's effect on increasing blood pressure and aortic stiffening  is alarming. This implies that drinking caffeinated drinks can endanger those with high blood pressure and already stiff arteries because it further increases their blood pressure and arterial stiffness, thus increasing their chances of suffering from life-threatening conditions such a sudden heart attack and stroke.

Caffeine's peak effect is reached about 60 minutes after ingestion, with a duration of at least 3 hours.

Talc: Hidden Danger of Baby Powder

Talc: Hidden Danger of Baby Powder

By: Arlene Gentallan

Talc: Hidden Danger of Baby Powder
Talc: Hidden Danger of Baby Powder

        Talc or talcum is extensively used in baby powder and cosmetics. It is an excellent moisture absorb-er which keeps the skin dry and soft while preventing awful rashes from forming.  Because of it's convenience, no wonder it has staggering use worldwide, but there's something about it that you should be wary of.

        Although shrouded with debates and controversy, there are compelling evidence based on several studies that talc is indeed a carcinogenic compound. Prolong inhalation of talc increases the risk of developing lung cancer and it's regular use on women's private part can increase the risk of acquiring ovarian cancer.

        In 1992, Obstetrics & Gynecology published a report where they stated that use of talc on genitals increases risk of women to develop ovarian cancer by threefold.

        Naturally occurring talc contains asbestos, a potent carcinogen with a strong linkage to lung cancer when inhaled. Even with today's quality control to ensure it is asbestos-free, it still is still considered toxic.

        And the crushing part is, many are still not aware of this. Manufacturers seldom tell about this health risk because the public will no longer buy their products. With all the research and studies done, it seems like the public is not well aware of talc's health risks. Think about it, wouldn't it be too dangerous for baby to use talc-based powder?

Lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson

        Among the many cases where talc-based products is linked to development of cancer, Jackie Fox's case is a wake-up call. Jackie Fox of Birmingham, Alabama died at the age of 62 last October 2015, more than 3 years after being diagnosed of ovarian cancer. She used pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson talc-based powder for almost 35 years.

        St. Louis jury orders Johnson & Johnson to pay damages of $72 million to Jackie Fox' family. "Jurors found Johnson & Johnson liable for fraud, negligence and conspiracy"

        Her case is the first to get justice among more than a thousand women who sued Johnson & Johnson for not warning consumers of the danger of talc-based products.

        The health risk of talc has sparked much controversy and contradicting facts. There are countries that recognizes this risk. The use of talc has been banned in European Union countries.

The controversy

        According to Cancer Research UK "All in all, there is some suggestion from existing studies that talcum powder is associated with a higher risk of ovarian cancer but the evidence isn’t very strong."

        The National Toxicology Program of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services stated on it's rodent studies that "there was some evidence of carcinogenic activity of talc in male F344/N rats" "clear evidence of carcinogenic activity of talc in female F344/N rats." and "no evidence of carcinogenic activity of talc in male or female B6C3F1 mice exposed to 6 or 18 mg/m3"

        Whether or not talc is carcinogenic to humans raises much debate, but will you want to use a product whose name is already tainted by endless debates and speculations.

Better safe than sorry...

Health Tips:

  • Don't take chances, use talc-free products.
  • Read the ingredient of beauty and cosmetic products to ensure talc or talcum is not one of them.
  • Instead of using talc-based baby powder to prevent diaper rash, you can use cornstarch in it's place.

What is the difference between clonidine and captopril?

What is the difference between clonidine and captopril?

What is the difference between clonidine and captopril?

Generic name: Clonidine
Brand name: Catapres
Classification: Central Alpha2 adrenergic agonists / central adrenergic inhibitors

Clonidine (Catapres) decreases blood pressure by inhibiting alpha-adrenergic receptors in the brain (central nervous system). This results to:
- Blockage of action of epinephrine and norepinephrine
- Vasodilation
- slows heart rate

Clonidine (Catapres)

When we become older, our blood vessels usually become narrow because of stiffening (arteriosclerosis) and fat deposition (atherosclerosis.) This impedes blood circulation.

Clonidine  relaxes blood vessels so blood can circulate with less pressure. It relaxes the blood vessels by inhibiting the action of catecholamines (such as epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine) which are potent vasoconstrictors released during fight-or-flight response.

Clonidine (Catapres) decreases blood pressure by inhibiting angiotensin converting enzyme. This results to:
- Vasodilation
- Sodium and water excretion through urination

Generic name: Captopril
Brand name: Capoten
Classification: Angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor

Captopril (Capoten)
Captopril inhibits the body from forming angiotensin II. Angiotensin II causes constiction of blood vessels and release of aldosterone which retains sodium and water.
Captopril works by relaxing blood vessel and preventing sodium and water from being retained inside the body. The wider diameter of the blood vessel allows for a smooth blood circulation. Promotion of water and sodium extretion leads to lower blood volume so less workload for the heart and decrease pressure in the vasculature.
  • Do not stop taking your maintenance anti-hypertensive drug because this may cause your blood pressure to rise further.
  • When taking an antihypertensive, watch out for dizziness and drowsiness.
  • If you are pregnant, consult your doctor regarding your medication regimen.

Health Benefits of Fresh Pineapple

Health Benefits of Fresh Pineapple


Pineapple is a popular tropical fruit that's an all around kitchen companion, used for many deserts and delicacies, can be eated fresh, cooked, canned, juiced, frozen etc., and available year round in almost all groceries and supermarkets.

This superfruit has been used since the ancient times to treat a variety of ailments but it is only during the modern times that we trully understand it's medicinal wonder.

What makes pineapple a superfruit?

Let's look at the nutritional content of pineapple:

Bromelain is found in high concentration in the core of the pineapple fruit and it's stem. Here are the health benefits we get from consumption of pineapple because of it's bromelain content:

Good for your Tummy
Pineapple naturally contains bromelain which is an enzyme that breaks down molecules of protein into it's simpler form, amino acids. So, in simpler sense, bromelaid aids in the digestion of protein.

You may realize now why pineapple makes an excellent meat tenderizer.

Aside from pineapple's ability to promote digestion, it is rich in fiber and a potent anti-inflammatory  so it is used to manage a variety of gut problems like colitis, constipation, dyspepsia, indigestion, and  inflammatory bowel disease.

Natural Pain-killer
Bromelain has anti-inflammatory property that can sooth body aches such as sprains, muscle and arthritic pain. It also helps minimize swelling.

Because of bromelain's aticoagulant, anti-thrombotic, fibrinolytic capability, it can be used as a blood thinner to reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke.

Bromelain reduces allergic reactions like runny nose, itchiness, and clogged nose. This is helpful to people suffering from asthma and allergic rhinitis.

According to the US National Library of Medicine "Bromelain has the potential of being developed as a therapeutic agent in MPM." (Malignant peritoneal mesothelioma (MPM) is a rare type of cancer that's caused by asbestos.)

Bromelain's antitumoral effect was superior to that of 5-fluorouracil (5-FU), an anticancer drug:

"This antitumoral effect was superior to that of 5-FU, whose survival index was approximately 263 %, relative to the untreated control. Bromelain significantly reduced the number of lung metastasis induced by LLC transplantation, as observed with 5-FU." -- US National Library of Medicine

According to USDA, 1 cup of pineapple chunks (165g) contains about:

         = 78.9mg of vitamin C
         = 180mg of potassium
         = 9 mg of sodium

Furthermore, pineapple contains other essential nutrients such as manganese, copper, B vitamins. It's also a good source of fiber.

It is low in cholesterol, saturated fat, protein, and sodium that's why it is a recommended for those suffering from hypertension. It is also low in calories which is ideal for those wanting to loose extra pounds.

vitamin C - Immune System Booster
This makes pineapple a good immune booster that helps our body to fight commonly transmitted ailments such as cold, flu, and influenza.

Manganese - for Healthy Bones & Skin
1 cup of pineapple (165 grams) contains about 77% of our daily-recommended intake of manganese. Manganese is important for health bone and connective tissue development.

There you have it, a round up of reasons why your shouldn't miss this sweet fruit in your diet.