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Monthly Archives: March 2018

  • For American Diabetes Association Alert Day, Learn Your Type 2 Diabetes Risk Factors

    Posted on March 26, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    diabetesAmerican Diabetes Association Alert Day, intended to raise awareness of the risk factors for diabetes and encourage Americans to assess their own risks, is March 27th. Diabetes is a health condition that affects the body’s ability to regulate its blood sugar, and although it affects over 29 million Americans, more than 25% of them may not know they have it.

    The primary goal of the day is to encourage people to take the type 2 diabetes risk test, which only takes a minute to complete but can help you assess your own diabetes risk.

    So what factors do affect your risk of diabetes? Here are eight:

    1. Genetics

    The greater the prevalence of type 2 diabetes in your immediate family, the greater risk you have of developing it yourself. Although there is no distinct inheritance pattern (meaning diabetes isn’t necessarily passed down from generation to generation), research does show that certain genetic markers make you more susceptible to diabetes. If you have a family member (or members) with diabetes, you are more likely to develop it yourself.

    Even if you don’t know of any family members with diabetes, they could simply be undiagnosed.

    1. Weight

    Your weight is the single biggest predictor of developing type 2 diabetes, and 90% of people with type 2 diabetes are overweight or obese. When you are overweight, you put greater pressure on your body’s ability to produce and use insulin to control blood sugar levels, leading to a greater risk of diabetes. The rise of type 2 diabetes in the United States also correlates with the national rise in obesity.

    1. Age

    The older you get, the greater the odds you have of developing diabetes. Your risk for diabetes begins to rise at age 45 and increases dramatically at age 65. Being young, however, doesn’t eliminate the risk – children and adolescents can develop type 2 diabetes, and those that do are at a higher risk of other complications such as heart and kidney disease.

    1. High Blood Pressure

    High blood pressure, or hypertension, is both prevalent with diabetics and has been linked to a predisposition for diabetes.

    1. Lack of Exercise and Sedentary Lifestyles

    A lack of exercise and a sedentary lifestyle are big contributors to diabetes. If you rarely exercise and spend much of your time sitting, you’re already at greater risk for diabetes, but you also may be contributing to other risk factors such as obesity or high blood pressure.

    While regular exercise helps reduce your risk of diabetes, it doesn’t mean you’re in the clear. Sitting for long periods of time - whether or not you get consistent exercise - can also increase your risk. If you have an office job, you should make an effort to break up all that time you spend sitting at your desk.

    1. Gender

    Men are more likely to have undiagnosed type 2 diabetes, although this risk could be due to men seeing the doctor less regularly than women.

    1. Race

    Different races and ethnic groups are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than others. African Americans, American Indians, Mexican Americans, and Asian Americans are among the groups that have a higher risk.

    1. Gestational Diabetes

    If you had gestational diabetes when you were pregnant, you also have a higher chance of developing type 2 diabetes later in life.

    Assessing Your Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

    Certain risk factors for type 2 diabetes, such as age, gender, and race, are beyond your control. But other factors, such as level of activity, weight, and blood pressure, can be improved. For American Association Diabetes Alert Day, make sure to take the test to determine your risk of developing type 2 diabetes, and then take action to reduce that risk level!


    This post was posted in Education

  • How to Know When You Can’t Just “Walk Off” an Injury

    Posted on March 20, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    walkoffSome injuries are merely temporary aches and pains caused by minor accidents, exercise, or even everyday activities. But other injuries are more problematic, and may require rest, therapy, or other medical interventions.

    It isn’t always easy to tell which is which, and in the case of serious injury, “walking it off” can make the problem worse. Sometimes, there are warning signs that you’ve suffered a serious injury, and you need to get yourself to a doctor.

    Here are five signs you can’t just walk off an injury.

    1. You Know Exactly When the Injury Occurred

    Everyday aches and pains and overuse injuries will often occur subtly, and you won’t be able to pinpoint the cause of pain. You may have slept on your neck wrong, or walked a greater distance than normal. In these cases, you might be able to wait and see if the injury heals itself.

    Other times, you know exactly how you hurt yourself. If you roll your ankle or felt a muscle tear, for instance, you were probably able to immediately identify your injury. In these cases, you’re more likely to have severely injured yourself.

    1. It’s Hard to Walk

    You can’t walk it off when you can’t walk. If taking a few steps causes major pain, you may have fractured something. Even if you didn’t, you will probably need time to rest your injury so you don’t make it worse. If you can’t walk, it’s time to get yourself to the doctor (and put your feet up in the meantime).

    1. You Feel Unstable

    Injuries don’t always come with severe pain. But if you feel unstable or wobbly as you move, you could have sustained a severe injury. For example, a wobbly or unstable knee could be the sign of a ligament tear. If you’re having trouble supporting yourself, you should see your doctor.

    1. Pain That Doesn’t Dissipate

    Normal aches and pains aren’t always a cause for concern. Stretching, rest, and strengthening exercises can often help you overcome minor injuries. But pain that progressively worsens over time could be a sign of a greater problem.

    1. Head Injuries

    Head injuries need to be taken seriously. If you have any symptoms  - such as blurred vision, dizziness, or nausea - after taking a knock on the head, you may have suffered a concussion. Get yourself to a doctor.

    In Closing

    If you experience any of these warning signs, you may have sustained a serious injury. Even if not, it’s usually better to be safe than sorry, because serious injuries don’t always make themselves known. If you suspect you’ve been injured, you should see your doctor to address the issue before it becomes worse.

    This post was posted in Education

  • 7 Ways to Improve Your Sleep for Sleep Awareness Week

    Posted on March 12, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    sleepThe National Sleep Foundation’s annual Sleep Awareness Week is March 11th  - March 17th this year. The organization is devoted to educating the public and promoting the benefits of a good night’s rest.

    Sleep is an important component of your overall health, affecting your physical and psychological wellbeing and dictating the quality of your waking life. If you aren’t getting good sleep on a regular basis, Sleep Awareness Week is the perfect time to take action.

    Here are seven ways to improve your sleeping for Sleep Awareness Week.

    1. Start Following a Sleep Schedule

    Your circadian rhythm (also known as your internal clock) regulates your sleeping and waking cycles. If you go to sleep and wake up at random or inconsistent times, you’re disrupting that rhythm and your body will have trouble recognizing when it’s time to sleep and wake up. If you go to bed and wake up at the same time every day (even on weekends) you’ll help your body maintain its internal rhythm and you’ll get better rest.

    1. Get a Better Pillow

    The quality of your sleep can depend on your pillow. A pillow with the wrong level of support will lead to neck pain or stiffness. Some pillows tend to retain heat, making you sweat. Others are simply uncomfortable, causing you to toss and turn. If your pillow isn’t getting the job done, it’s time to get a better one.

    1. Ditch the Electronics

    The light emitted by electronics, such as televisions, cell phones, and tablets, inhibits the production of melatonin, a hormone that helps you fall asleep. Using gadgets right before bed can actually sabotage your ability to get a good night’s rest. Lay off the electronics at least an hour before bed.

    1. Block the Light

    If you don’t hang curtains, or if the curtains you do have let in too much light, you might be reducing your ability to get a good night’s sleep. Outside light can cause you to wake up or prevent you from getting a truly deep sleep. Investing in some blackout curtains could do you a world of good.

    1. Get Some Exercise

    A consistent exercise routine reduces stress and tires you out, making it easier to doze off and improving the quality and duration of your sleep. Getting into exercise will convey many other health benefits as well. Just avoid exercising immediately before bed, as the stimulation and increased heart rate will actually make it harder to fall asleep.

    1. Relax

    This may seem obvious, but your body needs time to unwind before bed. If you’re running errands or working right up to the moment you go to bed, your mind may still be too active and stimulated to allow you to get quality sleep. Give yourself some time to relax.

    1. Reduce Noise

    Busy streets and loud neighbors can contribute a lot of sleep-disturbing environmental noise. On the flipside, some people have trouble falling asleep when it’s dead silent. You can reduce noise with earplugs or create a better noise environment with a sound machine. These solutions are affordable and easy to use. 


    This post was posted in Education

  • Seven Ways to Deal with a Sprained Ankle

    Posted on March 6, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    ankleSprained ankles sound like minor injuries until you suffer one, and your routine is majorly disrupted. Just walking around can be extremely difficult and painful with a sprain. The problem is compounded if you’re usually very active or if your job requires you to be on your feet.

    While there’s no quick fix for a sprained ankle, there are things you can do to aid recovery and get back on your feet. Here are seven ways to deal with a sprained ankle.

    1. Cold Therapy

    Applying cold to your ankle for the first two to three days after your sprain can make a big difference. You should ice your ankle every few hours for 10 to 20 minutes. The cold can help reduce swelling and provide pain relief. You can use hot and cold packs, but a Ziploc bag or bucket full of ice will do in a pinch.

    1. Elevation

    Anytime you sit or lie down, you should elevate your ankle above the level of your heart. This can reduce bruising and keep down swelling. You should try to keep your ankle elevated for two to three hours per day.

    1. Compression

    Applying compression to your ankle will also help reduce swelling and bruising. Wrapping the effected ankle in an elastic bandage will do the trick. Try not to wrap the bandage too tight - if it feels numb or the pain worsens, loosen the bandage a bit.

    1. OTC Medication

    Over the counter pain relief medications, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, can help manage the pain of a sprained ankle. NSAIDS such as Aleve will also fight pain, but reduce swelling as well. Check your medicine cabinet if you need a little relief.

    1. Ankle Supports

    When you still have to get around, an ankle support or brace can help. These supports wrap around your ankle to give you better stability, and they apply compression to reduce swelling. They’re easily adjustable and one size should fit most ankles.

    1. Exercises

    While you want to take it easy most of the time, you should perform some regular, light exercises. You can do range-of-motion exercises to improve your ankle mobility, stretching exercises to limber up, and strengthening exercises to bulk up your muscles and prevent future injury. Check out webmd.com for a good list of ankle exercises for sprained ankles.

    1. Rest

    Resting is one of the most important things you can do for your ankle. If you try to maintain your normal level of activity after a sprain, you could make the damage worse or re-injure yourself. You should avoid walking or standing on your ankle as much as possible. When you can put your feet up, don’t forget to elevate!

    This post was posted in Education

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