6 Reasons Doctors Are Now Warning People To Never Wear Flip Flops Again.

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Summer is officially in full swing and now that the weather is all hot and humid people everywhere are taking it easy and going into vacation mode. For most of us that means kicking off our shoes and going barefoot, but when we do have to go somewhere we usually just stick our feet in a pair of sandals or flip-flops.

Who doesn’t own at least one pair of flip-flops? Not only are they the most convenient and classic summer footwear option, they also help to keep feet cool and comfortable. However, that’s about all that they’re good for! Flip-flops are actually terrible for our feet and the rest of our bodily health and wellness. Once you read on about why this is so, and just how bad they truly are, you’ll definitely think twice before you spend hours on end in your flippies this summer.

Here’s why podiatrists and doctors agree that the rubber-soled footwear should only be worn poolside, at the beach, or in gym showers:

1) Injuries- Every year flip-flops are responsible for countless foot injuries that range from minor to severe because they offer the feet practically zero support. A lack of arch and heel support, combined with the fact that they make us walk awkwardly to begin with, are what leads to pain and strain on our feet. The most common injuries that people seek treatment for are things like tendinitis, stress fractures, and heel, arch, or muscle pains. Other problems you can expect to experience from wearing them include cuts and scrapes, jammed toes, rolled ankles, infections, sunburn, bunions, blisters, knee pain, hip pain, back pain, hammertoe, pinched nerves, and the list goes on.

2) They Trip You Up- Flip-flops are definitely not the most graceful things to walk around in. They actually cause us to walk really clumsily and it’s super easy to get tripped up by the shoes. Whether someone steps on the back of them while you’re walking or you manage to catch up the front end, they can throw you off balance in a second. Another hazard they present is slipperiness, it’s easy for feet to slide around in them, especially when they get wet or sweaty.

3) Toxic Materials- Those five dollar flip-flops you see being sold at stores are priced so low for a reason; they’re cheaply made! Many of the plastics and materials that go into making them are low quality and can be poisonous or toxic to human health. Many feature plastics that contain BPA which has been linked to cancer and other serious risks. Latex is also widely used, which many people are allergic to, and so it’s best to forgo the cheap plastic versions. Instead, look for ones made with leather, suede, cork, fabrics, and other natural types of materials that don’t pose such a serious threat to your health.

4) Gross Infections- The open, airy style may allow feet to ‘breathe’ but that comes at a price. Flip-flops expose your feet and toes to all sorts of germs, dirt, bacteria, fungus, and other nasty things that can lead to an infection. A number of studies have found that flip-flops pick up and hold a heck of a lot more bacteria than ordinary shoes. This was found to be especially true when people wore them anywhere in public, like at the gym or in restrooms where gross things thrive. Dangerous pathogens such as Staphylococcus and E. coli can easily find their way into any open sore, wound, or cut and wreak havoc on your health. While most people experience mild infections like Athlete’s foot, some have had to have their toes or feet amputated because they picked up a particularly dangerous strain of something.

5) Blisters- Albeit a minor problem in light of the other more serious flip-flop issues, blisters are painful to deal with nonetheless and can lead to further complications. Flip-flops are all but held on to the foot by those two measly little straps that cross over the top of it. This design means that when you walk the straps inevitably rub against your skin. Sometimes this leads to chaffing, irritation, and blisters form which, if and when they pop open, you’re exposed to more bacteria and possible infection.

6) They Slow You Down- The loose fitting shoes change your gait and in effect they slow people down. Findings from an Auburn University study showed that those who wear flip-flops often take smaller sized steps than their sneaker wearing counterparts. Anyone who has ever worn them knows this already because it’s virtually impossible to run for more than ten feet in the darn things!

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7 Signs and Symptoms You Have a Gluten Intolerance and May Not Even Realize It.

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Gluten. Everyone seems to be talking about it but is it really that bad for our health? The answer to that question is not easy because it’s very subjective and it all depends on whether or not your body is able to tolerate foods that contain it. While the reputation that gluten has been stuck with in the past few years may be undeservedly bad, one thing is for certain; that gluten intolerance can in fact be miserable to deal with.

Before we launch into all of the warning signs that indicate that you may be sensitive to gluten, you need to know some basic information, like what it is. Gluten happens to be a type of protein that’s commonly found in grains like wheat, oats, barley, and rye. In terms of baking, it’s part of what allows dough to rise and so it gives foods like breads and many desserts a chewy, fuller, and more airy type of texture.

The problem with gluten arises when a person has celiac disease and their body is, or over time becomes, intolerant to it. For the majority of people who are intolerant this means their immune systems react very badly to it and become inflamed when foods with gluten are eaten. This chronic type of inflammation can lead to the lining in the small intestine being damaged and in many cases the body becomes unable to adequately absorb nutrients. In turn a number of other medical complications arise, such as anemia and osteoarthritis. That is why it’s so important that gluten intolerant people do their absolute best to avoid any and all gluten.

If you think that you may be intolerant to gluten, your body will tell you. If you are experiencing the most common physical symptoms and signs that are associated with it and listed below, then you need to consult a doctor about the issue and to rule out other possible causes. With that in mind, if you have experienced any of the following it may be symptomatic of gluten intolerance and you should talk to your physician:

1. Chronic Fatigue
If you always feel tired and drained of energy, no matter how much sleep and rest you get, it could be diet related. When gluten is constantly inflaming your body, your immune system acts as if it is under attack and wastes a ton of energy trying to defend you. This is what makes gluten intolerant people feel so depleted and exhausted and over time it gets worse and worse. Eventually chronic fatigue sets in and the stress of it all just compounds it even more.

2. Fibromyalgia
If you have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia, which among other things is marked by weakness, sleep problems, muscle aches, and bodily pain, an intolerance to gluten could very well quite possibly be an underlying part of the associated chronic fatigue and other symptoms you’re feeling.

3. Stomach Pain
Symptoms such as bloating, diarrhea, gas, and constipation are all major and clear signs of gluten intolerance, especially if they are chronic. Persistent stomach pain and any of the aforementioned signs that last for days at a time need to be addressed by a doctor and should be taken very seriously. Foods that contain gluten can damage and inflame the small intestine in those who are intolerant and this may end up leading to a host of additional stomach/digestive related problems.

4. Chicken Skin
Chicken skin is when your skin resembles that of a skinned chicken and it’s marked by tiny, hard, white or pinkish-red bumps that look kind of like a rash. It’s actually a very common skin condition and the bumps often appear randomly, but are found most often around the elbows and on the back side of arms.
In medical terms chicken skin is called keratosis pilaris. It’s named after the keratinization of hair follicles on the skin which occurs when your body produces excess amounts of keratin, a skin protein. All of the extra keratin starts to clump together around hair follicles which causes bumps to form. Many cases of chicken skin are also attributed to fatty acid and vitamin A deficiencies which are brought on by a gluten inflamed gut causing malabsorption.

5. Itchy Skin
While the chicken skin mentioned previously is normally not itchy at all, many people with gluten sensitivity do have skin conditions that are extremely itchy, like psoriasis or eczema. Besides being very uncomfortable and itchy, they are also painful and require medication to properly deal with it. Human skin is easily influenced and affected by internal bodily conditions, so when your insides are inflamed and in turmoil it can lead to dry, itchy skin outbreaks.

6. Constant Headaches
If you experience migraines and chronic headaches, especially within sixty minutes of eating, it could very well be linked to diet and a gluten intolerance. People who also tend to have migraine headaches accompanied by pain, blurred vision, and dizziness show an increased sensitivity to gluten.

7. Dizziness
Feeling disoriented, lightheaded, and off balance are common symptoms people with gluten intolerance report. Most of the time these irregular and abnormal dizzy feelings show up soon after eating foods with gluten in them. If you keep track of what you eat and try out a strict gluten-free diet for at least a couple of weeks, you can gauge your bodies reaction and see if the dizzy feelings disappear and go away.

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7 Signs and Symptoms You Have Mold Illness and Don’t Even Realize It. This Is Good To Know.

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If you ever spot mold inside of your home, the chances are high that there’s likely a whole lot more growing in places where you can’t see. Even if you think your place is spotless and don’t see any visible signs, there’s definitely mold lurking somewhere, whether it’s in the dry wall or cracks and crevices around your home. That’s because the pesky fungi is impossible to completely avoid and can be found just about everywhere in the world. The most common indoor household areas include damp, warm, and shady spots, which makes bathrooms and basements the perfect place for mold to grow.

As nasty and gross as mold looks and sounds, the real issue is the harmful impact that it can have on human health. Many types of mold are extremely toxic, some are even deadly, yet it’s difficult to determine what types of mold you may be dealing with. According to the CDC’s online mold fact page, it is estimated that there are anywhere between 10 and 300 thousand different types of mold!

Included among the common indoor varieties is the widely feared Stachybotrys Chartarum, aka toxic black mold, which produces mycotoxins that are capable of causing a number of serious health issues. In addition to mycotoxins, which are toxic chemicals produced by mold, countless numbers of tiny, invisible spores also get released as mold grows and we end up breathing and ingesting both of these toxins directly into our bodies.

When mold enters our systems it can cause what’s generally known as ‘mold illness.’ There are a variety of health problems and complications encompassed by mold illness which include reactions such as inflammation, allergies, rashes, asthma, and other respiratory issues. All of these and more are covered below and the following list contains the most common symptoms associated with mold related illness.

1. Dry Skin and Rashes- Not many people are aware of dry, itchy, flaky skin as being a sign of mold toxicity, but in some cases it can be. Rashes vary widely as to size and scope of severity, some people may develop painful rashes or hives, while others experience inflammation, itchy patches of skin, and extreme discomfort. Should this ever happen to you, try your best to avoid scratching because that tears open skin and leaves you open to a much greater risk of infection. Furthermore, always seek professional medical treatment if intense swelling, pain, or discharge is present at a rash site because those are signs that you may be having a severe allergic reaction and your body can’t handle it.

2. Changes in Eye Health- Any changes in eye sensitivity should always be taken seriously. In terms of mold exposure, it can end up triggering an allergic response and in many people this causes symptoms that include blurry vision, redness, mild to intense itching, and watery eyes.

3. Headaches- Those who suffer from chronic headaches and/or frequent migraines may be able to trace the source of their pain to mold exposure. Sinuses often become infected and inflamed when we breathe in airborne mold particles. The sinus pressure this causes is what in turn causes many people to experience painful migraines and headaches.

4. Depression- Feelings of sadness and depression have been linked with mold illness and studies have found that damp, dark living spaces are ideal not only for mold growth, but also for having a negative effect on our mental health. Add to that all of the other terrible physical health issues that typically accompany mold exposure and any depression one may be feeling is made all the more worse. You can instantly improve the air quality inside your home by opening up the windows and airing the place out. Get a couple of plants too, they’re nice to look at and help to filter pollution and toxins from the air.

5. Breathing Difficulty- Respiratory-related issues are among the most common symptoms of mold illness. Coughing, wheezing, not being able to breathe deeply, and an inability to catch one’s breath are all red flags that point to mold allergies and exposure. People with asthma typically experience much worse symptoms due to all the mycotoxins and mold spores present in the air at any given time, which can trigger asthma attacks.

6. Bodily Aches and Pains- Unexplained muscle pain with no clear cause may actually be a symptom of mold illness. People typically experience a mild sort of achiness, but others have described the pain as being sharp, shooting, and intense.

7. There are a number of other signs of mold illness and they include the following; sneezing, runny nose, postnasal drip, fatigue, weight gain, stomach pain, numbness, chest tightness, nausea, diarrhea, twitching, and shaking. All of these symptoms are easily (and much more commonly) ascribed to all sorts of other health issues, especially allergies, so oftentimes people’s mold illness gets misdiagnosed and is attributed to those causes. That’s why it is very important to seek medical treatment if you think that you may have been exposed to mold and any symptoms you have continue to persist.

Watch the video below to learn how rid your house of Mold and Mildew:

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4 Foot Exercises That Will Get Rid of Lower Back, Knee and Hip Pain In Under 20 Minutes Per Day.

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Bodily aches and pain that’s chronic can wreak havoc on our daily lives and make us feel plain miserable. Out of all the types of pain ailments that people complain of, back pain is the number one most common. It’s so widespread that an estimated 80% or more of the total worldwide population will suffer from it at some point in life. Trailing slightly behind the back is pain located in the knees and hips, which are all linked to one another in some fashion or degree.

Oftentimes the source, or a major contributing factor, of persistent lower back, hip, and knee pain is our feet. The two things we stand on all throughout the day that take us places also take a beating in the process. It’s easy to overlook and take them for granted, but if you want better overall health and less bodily pain, the key lies in taking care of your feet. That means wearing supportive and comfortable shoes, stretching toes out, giving ourselves a good foot massage, and exercising them for strength which ultimately helps to improve balance.

If you suffer from chronic back, knee or hip pain that heating pads and medications don’t alleviate, you may want to try the following foot strengthening exercises. They may be the natural remedy you’ve overlooked or been missing and once you start working out your feet, you’re also working on preventing pain from popping up elsewhere in your body. That’s because human feet have over 15,000 nerves located in them and they all connect to form a network that reaches different areas of the body, such as our main organs and glands. People have found that by doing the simple techniques covered below they could dramatically relieve pain and discomfort caused by many common ailments. Here’s the best foot exercises you can do in the comfort of your home:

1) Resisted Plantar Flexion- This exercise is covered fully in the accompanying video which demonstrates exactly how to do it. These are simple yet highly effective at targeting all the little muscles in your feet, which happen to be the hardest to work out. They are also a first line of defense in regards to maintaining balance and preventing injury. Start by sitting up straight in a chair and extend one leg out straight in front of you. Wrap an exercise band around the ball of your foot so it covers the toes and hold it firmly. Point your toes forward and press the ball of your foot into the band, all while maintaining and holding it steadily flexed for five seconds. Return to the original resting position and continue for a total of 15 repetitions, do this 2x/day.

2) Ankle Circles- Just as feet get ignored, so do ankles. However, having strong and flexible ankles is key to avoiding further back and joint pain because weak ankles tend to tighten up and that leads to increased stress elsewhere on our bodies. For this exercise simply lay on your back and bring one leg up over your head. Circle the ankle around clockwise for a count of 10, then switch directions and rotate counterclockwise for another 10. Switch legs and repeat, aim to do these 3x/day.

3) Toe Presses- Do these to help get the blood flowing and warm up the muscles in your feet before the real action begins. Start in a standing position and bend slightly at the knees. Flex your toes and use them to dig into and grip the floor. Hold for four seconds then release. Do 10 repetitions, 3x/day.

4) Toe Walking- This is an excellent way to build muscle in toes, the balls of your feet, and ankles. The name implies it all, simply stand up on the tips of your toes and walk for at least 20 seconds. Come down off your tiptoes and rest for a solid 10 seconds or so, then repeat, doing 6 repetitions total, 2x/day.

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Signs and Symptoms You Have Breast Cancer and May Not Even Know It.

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Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer that women are at risk from and in America the statistics are startling. According to nationalbreastcancer.org, one in eight women are diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in their life, which makes it the second leading cause of death, falling only behind heart disease.

While the numbers are eye opening, they also tell a different story. Knowing the signs, being proactive, aware, and on top of any changes in breasts is the key to early detection and protecting yourself. In a breastcancer.org survey of 2,200 women, 37% of respondents reported that they first detected their cancer with a self-examination. A rule of thumb is that as soon as your breasts are fully developed you should begin to check them monthly. This annual exam serves to make you familiar with your body so that you know what feels normal and can recognize any changes as soon as possible.

As for when you should do a breast self-exam, the best time of the month is at least several days after your period has ended. That’s when breasts are least likely to be swollen and tender. Women who no longer get periods can choose an easy day to remember, like the first or last day of the month. For comprehensive instructions on how to perform a self-exam properly, please go to breastcancer.org for more information and read on below.

The first thing that you should always keep in mind is that not all bumps are automatic signs of cancer. Many lumps and bumps are normal and may often be attributed to the following causes; cysts, scar tissue, infections, and benign fibrocystic breast disease. With that in mind, you also need to know what to look and feel for. Check your entire breast area including armpits for any strange feeling lump that is new or just feels off. Cancerous lumps are often painless, hard, and unmovable when touched. The video describes it as any lump that feels different or ‘like a lump in your oatmeal.’ These should be checked out further by your doctor as soon as possible, regardless of whether or not you’ve had a recent mammogram that was normal.

The next step is to check for any visible changes to your breasts. Things to watch out for include reddened, thickened, dimpled, puckered, or scaly skin, as well as any abnormal flattening or indentation on the breast. Always keep an eye on nipples as well so you can recognize any of the following changes in them that may indicate breast cancer; redness, pain, scaliness, itchiness, skin thickening, nipple turning inward, or nipple discharge.

In addition to doing monthly self-exams, you should always have your doctor perform an annual breast exam at your yearly check up. At age 40 you should also begin annual mammograms and if there is any history of cancer in your family be sure to inform your doctor about it.

By simply knowing the signs and symptoms that often accompany breast cancer and what to look for you can help protect yourself and detect any abnormality early on. Pass on this information so that more women are aware of them and remember to do annual self-exams.

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5 Signs and Symptoms You Have Fibromyalgia and May Not Even Know It.

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Fibromyalgia is a chronic medical condition that causes widespread bodily pain, muscle aches, and fatigue. It’s a terrible disorder to have and it can wreak havoc on the lives of people who suffer from it, wearing them down and tiring them out. It’s also a lot more common than many people assume it to be. According to scientists at the National Institutes of Health, fibromyalgia is estimated to affect around five million American adults and most of them, between 80-90%, are women.

One of the main issues with fibromyalgia is how tricky it can be to properly diagnose. The pain and symptoms typically associated with the disorder often make diagnosis difficult because they tend to overlap with other common medical conditions. Compounding the difficulty is the fact that there are currently no tests or scans that can definitively detect it, and so people need to keep close track of everything that’s going on with their bodies, and tell their doctor exactly what ills them.

While widespread physical pain is the main symptom of fibromyalgia, there are a number of other ones that people may experience and the following are the signs and symptoms associated with it that you should never ignore:

1. Pain- According to the Mayo Clinic, it’s believed that fibromyalgia affects the way the brain processes pain signals and this causes them to be magnified. While the pain is generally widespread all over the body, the most common areas where it’s felt is the back, neck, abdomen, and in muscles. People report feeling a range of pain types, from sharp and severe pain that’s long lasting, to a milder yet constant dull ache that lasts for at least 3 months or longer. In addition, the pain is oftentimes felt more at night and over the counter medicines do not alleviate it.

2. Tiredness and Fatigue- Pain is one reason why those with fibromyalgia have difficulty sleeping and when they do fall asleep the quality is poor so they don’t feel as rested as they otherwise should. A common complaint is that no matter how much sleep they get, they wake up feeling tired and worn out.

3. Lack of Mental Focus- Another common symptom is what’s known as “fibro fog” and it’s when a person’s cognitive abilities, such as concentration, paying attention, focusing, and remembering things, are negatively impaired. This results in confusion and a lack of mental clarity which can be extremely frustrating and disconcerting.

4. Sensory Issues- Many people report feeling extra sensitive to temperature changes and their bodies are seemingly unable to regulate it properly. Some may feel super hot or freezing cold even if the temperature changes only just slightly. Another sensory related symptom is paraesthesia, the feeling of pins and needles in hands, feet, arms, and legs. The tingly discomfort can last anywhere from a minute or two to well over an hour or more and some people also experience numbness as well.

5. Gastrointestinal Issues- Having abnormal and excessive gas, constipation, diarrhea, bloating, and nausea are all common symptoms and should be monitored closely. Also, fibromyalgia is often found in patients who suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome, acid reflux disease, and those who have interstitial cystitis, which is a painful bladder condition.

Watch the video below to see some all natural ways to manage fibromyalgia

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