Recent data shows the rates of obesity in America are at an all-time high, and almost 40% of adults are obese.  Obesity is a very serious disease, as it is associated with increases in heart disease, diabetes, and even death.  To help prevent obesity and lose weight, the CDC recommends getting enough exercise along with a proper diet.  For an average adult, they recommend getting at least 20 minutes of moderate intensity exercise such as fast walking or jogging per day or 150 minutes total per week.  Following these recommendations can help you live a healthier disease-free life! 

Pregnancy and folic acid

When it comes to the health of babies and their mothers after birth, the US ranks very poorly.  Data shows only around 25% of pregnant mothers were taking enough folic acid prior to becoming pregnant.  Folic acid is extremely important for a developing baby, and without enough folic acid the baby may have brain or nervous system problems after birth.  Taking folic acid is recommended in all women who can become pregnant.  Experts recommend getting at least 400 mcg of folic acid per day, which can be found in most prenatal vitamins. Ask a pharmacist if you have any questions!

Difficulty Sleeping ?

Difficulty sleeping or insomnia is a very common condition, especially in adults.  Medications can be helpful in many patients, but the most effective treatments surprisingly don’t involve drugs.  Some things you can do to help improve sleep include routine exercise (3-4 times per week), creating a comfortable sleep environment by controlling temperature and limiting distractions, avoid caffeine or alcohol for several hours before bedtime, avoiding drinking large amounts of liquids in the evening, and doing something relaxing and enjoyable before bedtime.  Trying some of these suggestions will help you get a more restful night’s sleep!

Strokes and your health

Each year over 900,000 people in the US will have a stroke.  It is important to recognize the signs of a stroke and seek help quickly so that doctors can effectively treat them.  It is best to be seen by an emergency room within 90 minutes of symptoms starting because some drugs cannot be used if you come too late.  Signs of stroke follow the F.A.S.T. acronym which stands Facial drooping, Arm weakness, Speech difficulties, and Time.  If you or anyone else has these symptoms, remember to quickly get to the emergency room for the best possible treatments

New blood pressure guidelines

The American Heart Association recently lowered the blood pressure threshold from 140/90 to 130/80. The bad news: this means that over half of the U.S adult population is now considered to have high blood pressure. The good news: there is still a chance you don’t need to take medication for it. You may be able to lower your blood pressure simply with changes in diet and exercise habits. If you believe you may now have high blood pressure, make an appointment with your doctor or stop into our pharmacy and get your blood pressure checked today!

Don’t miss out on your Vitamin D

During the winter months it can be difficult to get your recommended 600 IU daily dose of the “sunshine vitamin”. Thankfully, there are other ways to get that Vitamin D. Foods such as yogurt, orange juice, and milk are fortified with Vitamin D.  Incorporating these into your diet can help you boost your Vitamin D levels. You may also want to try Vitamin D3 supplements that we carry right here in the pharmacy. Keep your body strong and healthy by maintaining those Vitamin D levels this winter!

Reduce your fall risk

Falls are the leading cause of both injuries and death from injuries in the older adult population. However, there are many ways to limit these falls and injuries. Watch for wet, slippery, or icy patches on sidewalks and in parking lots. Ensure your home has adequate lighting. Have your vision checked yearly and always wear your glasses or contacts. Exercise regularly or try programs like Tai Chi to try and improve your strength, balance, and coordination. Finally, minimize cords, rugs, and clutter that might cause you to trip. Don’t let falls get you down; take the steps to decrease your chance of falling!

Is Winter Drying you out ?

In the winter months, you turn your inside heaters on and humidity levels drop leaving less moisture in the air. This can lead to dry, cracked skin which can be uncomfortable. In order to evade dry skin this winter season, limit your use of harsh hand soaps and lotions. Try to avoid bathing or showering in very hot water, as this can also increase skin dryness. After bathing, apply a moisturizing lotion to lock in the moisture. Don’t let this winter leave you dry!

Vitamin D

 Vitamin D is a vitamin produced in your body in response to sunlight.  So as summer ends, it gets tougher to get the amount of Vitamin D our body needs.  Vitamin D helps fight disease, gives you more energy, and can help with weight loss.  Talk to your pharmacist today about the Vitamin D supplement that is right for you, so you can avoid those post-summer blues.

Emergency plan

With all that has been going on lately with Hurricane Harvey and Irma, remember it is always important to have an emergency plan in case the unthinkable happens.  Having a plan can help give you peace of mind knowing you are prepared, and help keep you safe.  Talk with your family or those you live with, and make a plan so you can be ready in the case of an emergency.