Good Health Blog

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Monthly Archives: September 2018

Your daily radiation dose….

Gavin LeSueur - September 21, 2018

Summer fun is on the way.  In the tropics is is always summer so being sun smart is a year round job. The southern states are now warming up and the time is right to put in place your sun plan.  Buy fresh sublock, check the sun suits are not deteriorating and talk to the kids about taking responsibility for their sun protection.

Avoid the sun during the middle of the day. The sun’s rays are strongest between about 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Schedule outdoor activities for other times of the day, even in winter or when the sky is cloudy.

You absorb UV radiation year-round, and clouds offer little protection from damaging rays. Over the years I have treated hundreds of severe sunburn cases from cloudy day exposure. Avoiding the sun at its strongest helps you avoid the sunburns and suntans that cause skin damage and increase your risk of developing skin cancer. Sun exposure accumulated over time also may cause skin cancer.

Wear sunscreen year-round. Sunscreens don’t filter out all harmful UV radiation, especially the radiation that can lead to melanoma. But they play a major role in an overall sun protection program.

Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30. Apply sunscreen generously, and reapply every two hours — or more often if you’re swimming or perspiring. Use a generous amount of sunscreen on all exposed skin, including your lips, the tips of your ears, and the backs of your hands and neck.

Wear protective clothing. Sunscreens don’t provide complete protection from UV rays. So cover your skin with dark, tightly woven clothing that covers your arms and legs, and a broad-brimmed hat, which provides more protection than a baseball cap or visor does. I’ve lost count of how many ear skin cancers I’ve had to remove from peaked caps!

Don’t forget sunglasses. Look for those that block both types of UV radiation — UVA and UVB rays.

Be aware of sun-sensitizing medications. Some common prescription and over-the-counter drugs, including antibiotics, can make your skin more sensitive to sunlight. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about the side effects of any medications you take. If they increase your sensitivity to sunlight, take extra precautions to stay out of the sun in order to protect your skin.

Check your skin regularly and report changes to your doctor. Examine your skin often for new skin growths or changes in existing moles, freckles, bumps and birthmarks.

With the holiday season rapidly approaching it is timely to get sun smart!

Ten tips for a longer life

Gavin LeSueur - September 6, 2018

No matter what your age, you have the power to change many of the variables that influence how long you live, and how active and vital you feel in your later years. Actions you can take to increase your odds of a longer and more satisfying life span are really quite simple:  This list is from the Harvard Medical School. Number eight is what is about. The rest are up to you.

  1. Don’t smoke.
  2. Enjoy physical and mental activities every day.
  3. Eat a healthy diet rich in whole grains, vegetables, and fruits, and substitute healthier monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats for unhealthy saturated fats and trans fats.
  4. Take a daily multivitamin, and be sure to get enough calcium and vitamin D.
  5. Maintain a healthy weight and body shape.
  6. Challenge your mind. Keep learning and trying new activities.
  7. Build a strong social network.
  8. Follow preventive care and screening guidelines.
  9. Floss, brush, and see a dentist regularly.
  10. Ask your doctor if medication can help you control the potential long-term side effects of chronic conditions such as high blood pressure, osteoporosis, or high cholesterol.

Health IS rocket science!

Gavin LeSueur - September 3, 2018

Rocket science is all about statistics that result in the smallest margin of error so that the unforgiving nature of the environment entered into is survivable. Preventative health is like rocket science. Preventative health is based on a statistical analysis of health interventions that provided a benefit into well being – quality and/or quantity of life. If the research is not there to back up an intervention then it does not become a recommendation. We live in an environment that is very survivable but we contend with genetic issues, environmental toxins and organisms, varying personal habits and socio-economic circumstances that all impact on our health. Health Science is the practical application of knowledge about how these issues can be modified and the bad effects minimised! Rocket Science helps.

For example, the science behind what is good food has been around a long time. Most of us will have studied the ‘food pyramid’ and ‘healthy food groups’ at school and we might even remember some of it! Science has studied patterns of food use over time and the results are scary. The average six year old today has consumed more sugar than their grandparents did – in their entire life. How can we have so much more knowledge yet be making a complete new set of mistakes? Doctor’s in the 1940 recommended ‘smoking’. Then the science got behind the obvious issues that developed with time and smoking rates started declining when the health consequences become apparent. As obesity rates climb the lifelong complication rates on health disease, diabetes and joint failure continue to grow. It is time to apply some Rocket Science to your health and take on board what has been scientifically proven to improve longevity and quality of life.

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