I am Dr. Dinesh Kumar and I am a General Physician. Lifestyle diseases are defined as disease link with a way, people live their life. This is commonly caused by alcohol, drugs, smoking as well as lack of physical activities and unhealthy eating. Diseases that impact our lifestyle are heart diseases, stroke, obesity, diabetes, arthritis, metabolic syndrome, chronic renal disease, renal failure and depression and also there can be some psychosexual disorder. So, what is the prevalence and risk factors? In India, 25% of people, over 25 years of age, they suffer from hypertension and this hypertension causes severe morbidity and mortality. It is a high-risk condition causes approximately 50% of death from stroke and 50% of coronary artery disease which is heart disease. The dominant diseases and in this aspect are considered to be CAD, cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or asthma and obesity.
There may be some risk factors associated with this and these can be modifiable risk factors or non-modifiable risk factors. People have started to consume more meat, dairy products, vegetable oils, tobacco, sugary foods, coca-cola, and alcoholic beverages. They have developed a sedentary lifestyle and greater risk of obesity. So, rates of colorectal cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, and lung cancer. They have started increasing. After these dietary changes or the modification in the lifestyle. Adults can develop lifestyle diseases through behavioural factors that impact on that. These can be unemployment and unsafe life, poor social environment. Certain diseases, such as diabetes, dental cavities, and asthma, they appear at greater risk in the younger population.
It is important to note that the combination of these modifiable and non-modifiable factors are responsible for this non-communicable disease. The non-modifiable risk factors basically comprise those characteristics that are inherent that is age, sex, and genes and cannot be altered due to individual and environmental effects. On the other way, we have the modifiable risk factors which can be transformed by the society or individuals. Thereby ensuring amended health outcomes poor diet, physical inactivity, tobacco use has been typically highlighted as the prime cause of lifestyle diseases by WHO. typically we have 4 common modifiable risk factors that can be controlled.
These are an unhealthy diet, physical inactivity, tobacco use and harmful use of alcohol. The composition of human diet has changed considerably over time. With the high demand for readily available pre-cooked food are found to be high in sugar and salt and they lack inadequate nutrition. This spread of fast food culture has resulted in the increased spread of obesity. Tobacco accounts for 30% of cancer globally but these lifestyle diseases are affecting and how these are affecting the society. The population growth has slowed down but still remains very high. It is also observed at the growth of population in the bracket of 60 years and above is increasing along with the effects of morbidity and mortality. The burden of these diseases has significantly affected as well. There has been a rise in unemployment as well and healthcare expenditures. Prevention and management is the final part here.
In order to improve the situation, we will have to increase spending on prevention, screening and early detection of such cases. Reducing the fat, compulsion of diet, engaging in regular physical exercises. The cost of treatment for an oral cancer patient has estimated about 4 lakhs. Most oral cancers are preventable by avoiding the use of tobacco. Such an approach will be a relief to most Indian families that meets 70% of there health expenses out of there own pockets. Lifestyle diseases can be tackled to a large extent by simple modifications in our lifestyle, dietary changes. For example: reduce salt intake, increase consumption of fruits, salads, and vegetables. Improve physical activities and avoid the use of alcohol. Perhaps, by increase alcohol and tobacco usage and through information, communication through medical websites like Lybrate. If you want to meet me, you can meet in my Noida clinic which is in Supertech. You can also consult me online through Lybrate.
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Feeling acidic after eating a heavy meal can often make you regret those last few morsels. This acidic sensation is known as acid reflux or Gastroesophageal reflux disease, better known as GERD. GERD occurs when the functioning of the lower oesophagus muscles is restricted. This makes the undigested food in the stomach and stomach acids leak back into the oesophagus.
- Do not lie down after eating: When your body is in a horizontal position, there are higher chances of food being regurgitated into the oesophagus. To avoid this, finish your meals at least 3 hours before going to bed. Sit upright while eating and do not lie down or slouch immediately after eating. This gives the food time to be digested and move out of the stomach.
- Limit your food intake: Overeating is one of the most common triggers of GERD. Cutting down your portion sizes can instantly reduce the number of GERD occurrences. Instead of eating large, heavy meals, shorten the duration between meals and have more frequent small meals.
- Avoid foods that trigger acidity: With time, you will soon realise which types of foods trigger an acidic reaction. Some common triggers are onions, peppermint, caffeine, citrus fruits etc. Keeping a diary can help identify such foods and ease your problem.
- Quit Smoking: Nicotine not only harms your lungs, but can affect your digestive system as well. It is responsible for weakening the muscles that control the opening between the stomach and oesophagus. This allows stomach acids and food from the stomach to re-enter the oesophagus. Alcohol can also worsen GERD symptoms and hence it is better to avoid alcohol is you suffer from frequent bouts of acid reflux.
- Lose weight: Overeating, obesity and acid reflux go hand in hand. Being overweight can put extra pressure on your stomach and abdomen, thus pushing food and gastric juices into the oesophagus. Losing this extra weight should effectively resolve your acid reflux problem if you are overweight.
- Look at your medications: Some types of medication too can cause acid reflux by interfering with the digestive system and irritating the oesophagus. These types of medication include blood pressure medication, asthmamedication, Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, bisphosphonates, sedatives and painkillers. Do not simply stop taking these medications, but talk to a doctor about replacing them with something else.
Excessive gas can be defined as bloating, belching, flatulence and burping. It does not matter what you call it but what matters is how you treat it and get relieved from the embarrassing symptoms.
Here are some ways in which you can avoid gastric problems:
- Avoid eating foods that can cause gas or acidity. The vegetables which are known to cause acidity are Brussels, onions, garlic and broccoli; dairy products like cheese, milk, ice cream and whole grains can cause acidity. The reason is that these products have fiber, starch and sugar which cannot be digested easily thus causing pain in the intestines. Fruit which contain sorbitol and aerated drinks should also be avoided. Eat everything but in moderation.
- Avoid drinking before meals as the stomach acids are lost and the food cannot be digested well. Water and liquids should be had half an hour after a meal for a better digestion.
- Food should be eaten slowly. Eating and drinking fast allows a lot of air to go in the stomach with the food. This in turn can cause a stomach pain.
- Over the counter drugs can be taken for immediate help in digestion. These medicines contain enzymes which aid in digestion. The enzyme works to dissolve the sugar that is found in many vegetable and fruit.
- Do not fill air in the stomach. Some habits like chewing gum, drinking from a straw, smoking causes the air to fill in the stomach, thereby, leading to gas.
- Artificial sweeteners such as Sorbitol should be avoided as these are difficult to digest and can easily lead to a feeling of bloating.
However, all the pains might not be due to gas and could be a sign of something serious. These could be:
- Lactose intolerance: This is the inability to digest milk and milk products. The sugar in the milk known as lactose and cannot be digested easily.
- Irritable bowel syndrome: People who suffer with pain in the lower abdomen constantly might be suffering from IBS.
- Upper gastrointestinal disorders: If one gets belching occasionally then it is alright but a constant belching might be a sign of gastrointestinal disorder in the upper tract. These could be gastro esophageal reflux disease (GERD), gastroparesis, or peptic ulcers.
Cervical spondylosis is fast becoming the bane of modern life. An age-related wear and tear problem affecting the spinal discs in your neck, cervical spondylosis is increasingly affecting the young because of the use of cell phones, laptops and the like.
Cervical spondylosis is a general term used to define shrinkage of disc in between vertebrae in the neck region. Along with disc degeneration, bony projections also form in the area and are called bone spurs.
Other causes of cervical spondylosis are dehydrated discs. Discs are thick, pad-like cushions in between vertebrae that act as shock absorbers. They are made of a gel-like material that can dry over time. This causes the spinal vertebrae to rub together causing pain. The discs also crack which allows the internal gel-like material to spill out and impinge on spinal nerves causing symptoms.
There is a narrowing of the space required by the spinal cord and nerves that emanate in the upper spine to go to various parts of the body. Pinching of these nerves can cause alarming symptoms like:
- Numbness and weakness in your arms, hands, legs and feet
- Lack of coordination and difficulty in walking
- Loss of bladder or bowel movement
- Stiffness and pain in neck
Treatment and management:
Usually, cervical spondylosis doesn’t cause any symptoms. But when you start experiencing pain, stiffness and weakness of muscles, it’s best to go to a doctor who will diagnose the problem and then treat it.
Treatment for cervical spondylosis depends on the severity of your symptoms. Its goal is to get rid of pain, allow you to carry on your daily activities and prevent any permanent damage to your spinal cord and nerves.
- Anti-inflammatory drugs are prescribed to reduce pain and inflammation. Example Ibuprofen.
- Corticosteroids are oral medications to get rid of the severe pain. If these don’t work, your doctor can suggest steroid injections.
- Muscle relaxants medicines relax the muscles in the upper part of the spine and help in curing neck pain and stiffness
- Anti-seizure medications are also prescribed to dull the pain of damaged nerves in the spine. These include epilepsy medications, such as gabapentin and pregabalin.
- Non-surgical treatments are usually very effective in treating cervical spondylosis and surgery is usually not required. Physiotherapy is a bulwark for patients as it helps manage the condition very well.
- Neck exercises that help stretch and strengthen muscles in your neck and shoulders can help manage debilitating symptoms of cervical spondylosis.
- Few patients also benefit from traction, which can help provide more space for nerve roots within the spine.
- Surgery is the last resort for treating cervical spondylosis.
- It is suggested when non-surgical treatments fail and the pain and neurological signs such as weakness in your arms or legs get worse.
- It is done to create more room for your spinal cord and nerve roots.
Cervical spondylosis surgery typically involves removing:
- Herniated disc
- Bone spurs
- Part of a vertebra
The food you eat is critical for your overall wellbeing as a number of cancers that affect the human body are of gastrointestinal origin. Stick to organic and chemical free foods to live a healthier life since they reduce the risk of cancer substantially. Regular consumption of the food items mentioned below increase your risk of developing cancer, as well as many other conditions and should be avoided at all costs.
1. Microwave Popcorn
Most microwave-popcorn bags are lined with c8, also known as perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) which increases the risk of certain cancers such as kidney, testicular, bladder, pancreas and liver cancer notably. Microwave popcorn also contains an artificial or synthetic butter flavoring called diacetyl which is extremely toxic and obstructs breathing.
2. Canned Tomatoes
While tomatoes are considered to be cancer fighting foods, their canned counterparts are extremely unhealthy and may cause cancer. This is mainly due to the lining of the cans they are put in which contains a chemical known as bisphenol-A or BPA that has been proven to elevate the risk of infertility as well as prostate and breast cancer. Due to their (tomatoes) high acidity, BPA leaks from the lining of the cans and penetrates into the fruit. Tomatoes should be cooked fresh or stored in glass jars.
3. Processed/Grilled Red Meat
Processed meats such as sausages, prosciutto, bacon, pimento loaf, bologna, hot dogs etc., contain various chemicals and preservatives such as sodium nitrate. This is added to make the meat look fresh and appealing but are, in fact, carcinogenic in nature. Moreover, you should also avoid grilling meat since it releases a carcinogen known as heterocyclic aromatic amines. Another dangerous food item includes smoked meat since it picks up tar from the smoking process.
4. Farmed Salmon
It is imperative to avoid farmed salmon because they are fed unnatural diets that are contaminated with carcinogens, antibiotics, chemicals, pesticides and so on. They also harbor sea lice, 30 times greater in amount than wild salmon. High levels of PCBs, cancer causing dioxins, and mercury have been found in them. It is advisable to opt for wild sockeye salmon instead of farmed salmon