Sunday, November 26, 2006

Do You Want To Experience The Benefits Of Massage Therapy?

Massage therapy has been around for a long time. Ancient cultures in China, Egypt, India, Greece and Rome used massage as part of their medical and health procedures.

Massage has been used to treat all kinds of medical conditions and disorders. Massage can be used to treat stress, it can help you relax and it generally promotes a feeling of well being. Massage therapy works to help all aspects of the physical system - the muscular, nervous, circulatory and immune systems.

Quite apart from the undoubted physical benefits of massage therapy, much of the benefit is psychological; it has to do with the feel-good factor of intimate contact with another human being.

One of the ultimate forms of stress relief is a full body massage. Most people who experience a full body massage cannot stop telling people how amazing they felt afterwards. The first thing that someone usually does after experiencing his or her first full body massage is book another full body massage! A common response from people who've experienced a full body massage is that for the first time in their lives they feel they've managed to attain total relaxation.

In addition to full body massage, massage can be used on specific, individual parts of the body. One of the main individual body parts that is subject to a specialist form of massage is the foot. Foot massage is generally referred to as reflexology.

Massage therapy was on the fringes of conventional medicine for a long time, but modern medical experts generally accept the efficacy of massage. In fact, more than 70% of American hospitals now offer massage therapy as a part of their treatments.

What do hospitals use massage therapy for? They use it in the treatment of chronic pain symptoms, in cancer cases, pregnancy, infant care, joint and muscle mobility, stress management and many other symptoms and disorders.

New research suggests that massage therapy helps to boost the immune system, lower blood pressure and manage pain.

Massage therapy can be used to aid people who are receiving drug and alcohol withdrawal treatment. Another great benefit of massage therapy is that it can be used in conjunction with other therapies to strengthen their effects - e.g. aromatherapy, reflexology, acupressure and reiki.

It is good to see massage therapy crossing over from the alternative medicine field to the mainstream because this means that many more people are able to experience the benefits of this very versatile form of treatment and therapy.

Until Next Time, Good Health and Well-Being!

Dave Kettner
Intimate Bath and Body

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Stretch Marks: Common Causes

What are stretch marks? Stretch marks are the nasty lines of stretched tissues that appear on the upper thighs or the stomach right after pregnancy. Stretch marks also appear after a person has relatively gained or increased weight abruptly. During weight increase and height growth, the production of collagen by our body is aborted. Collagen is our skin's natural protein that gives our skin its natural texture. Once there is an imbalance in the necessary amount of collagen in our skin, it begins to wrinkle and fold at certain areas. Our skin begins to resemble long and think cat-like dry and gray scratches across our stomach and over our thighs, and thus begins the occurrence of the perennial problem and nightmare of women: stretch marks!

Pregnancy is not the only cause of stretch marks in women. Although less in probability, stretch marks can also appear in men. People who are obese are also prone to stretch marks. As dry skin can mean a less-supple or expandable skin, when there is an increase in weight and height, stretch marks are also more likely to occur in people with this type of skin.

Although stretch marks can diminish over time, most people tend to be pro-active about stretch marks. Recent products are out in the market. These medical products help remove stretch marks from visible areas in your body. Albeit extremely expensive, topical creams, ointments and medical operations are also provided by cosmetologists and dermatologists for the removal of stretch marks. It is advisable though that since the human body has its own process and its own natural time frame, either you best leave stretch marks alone rather than risk costly medical operations that do not guarantee much for most women, or you prevent stretch marks from happening at all.

How do you prevent stretch marks? Certain foods contain properties that either dry up the skin or fats that accumulate fast in certain areas of the body. Certain foods that induce the fast production of stretch marks must also be avoided. Foods to avoid include chocolate and chocolate drinks, coffee, tea and soda as these contain skin-drying properties and caffeine. Fruits, vegetables, proteins such as white meat, fish, yogurt, milk, peanuts and fibrous foods help prevent stretch marks. Enough sleep, hydration or adequate intake of water and liquid also reduce the chances of getting those highly undesirable stretch marks.

Until Next Time, Good Health and Well-Being!

Dave Kettner
All Holistic Health

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Prostate Cancer - A Case for Early Detection

Prostate Cancer, it seems, is one of the most common forms of cancer in men. Some of the platitudes served up in hopes of calming your fears, are just plain dumb. Things like "More men die with prostate cancer than from it" or "It's one of the best cancers to get-it's so slow growing". NONSENSE. Cancer is cancer and NONE of it is good. A positive diagnosis always hits hard, especially if cancer has never been a factor in your family medical history.

It is recommended that males reaching the age of fifty should have a 'PSA' (Prostate-Specific Antigen) test on an annual basis. The 'PSA' test can be affected by a number of internal factors and is NOT a definitive indication that prostate cancer is present. An increase in 'PSA' level should simply act as a red flag that further tests might be advantageous.

On the upside, further testing can show the presence of Prostatitis (inflammation of the prostate) or Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), which is an enlargement of the prostate. Both can normally be treated with prescriptions.

On the downside, further tests may show the presence of cancer. A 'PSA' reading of 4 or less is usually acceptable to most doctors. Any significant jump in 'PSA' level should trigger additional tests.

One such test is known as a Trans Rectal Ultrasound. This test lasts approximately 25 minutes and consists of the insertion of a special camera into a part of the body designed for the expulsion of those portions of our food not required by the body. The camera is attached to a computer screen, allowing the doctor to visually examine the prostate and has an opening through which is inserted a spring-loaded rod. This enables him to take a tissue sample directly from the prostate (a biopsy), which is then analyzed in a lab for the presence of cancer. Be advised-it sounds a lot worse than it actually is-NOT at all painful, but yes, not comfortable and probably mostly embarrassing. However, it can be a lifesaver.

Results normally arrive within 10 days and can vary. Good news--no cancer. Really bad news--cancer that has erupted from the prostate and is spilling cancer cells into the blood stream.

However, there can be good news and bad news--cancer is present, but it is still contained within the prostate, and this is the main thrust of this article.

At this point, specialists become involved, usually a Radiologist and a Urologist. Do not assume that either one will lay out all possible treatment options available to you for your situation.

The Radiologist will present options involving radiation as a treatment for your cancer. There are several available and the intensity usually depends on the stage your cancer has reached at the time of diagnosis. Discuss these in detail, making sure you are made aware of the possible side effects of each. Some involve surgery some do not.

The Urologist will outline your situation and the procedures involved in the surgical removal of the prostate. Should you opt for this procedure, find a Urologist capable of performing "nerve sparing" surgery.

Nerve sparing surgery is very delicate and involves the stimulation of the nerves that control bladder and sexual functions so as to locate them where they surround the prostate. Once located, they can be shaved away from the prostate before it is removed. Even with the nerves only saved on one side, the prognosis for recovery of full bladder control and upwards of 75% of sexual function is excellent. This is not the case if the prostate is simply removed.

Some Recommendations:

1. When you reach 50, have an annual 'PSA' test
2. If there is a family history, start at 40 (or earlier)
3. Depending on where you live, there may be a fee. PAY IT. The investment is worth it if you value living
4. If not satisfied with initial recommendations, get another opinion (or a third)
5. Get complete information before making a decision. What treatments are available? What side effects are possible? What results can be expected?
6. Ask any and all questions you can think of
7. Share your diagnosis with family and close friends. This support group can ease your tensions considerably. If you are not comfortable with this, support groups consisting of survivors and others with the same diagnosis are available in many communities.

Prostate cancer, if undetected, ultimately spreads in many cases to the bones and bone cancer from all reports is extremely painful. It is normally treated with massive doses of chemotherapy and/or radiation with their attendant hair loss, bloating and nausea. The prognosis is never bright.

That bullet called cancer CAN be dodged.

The secret: EARLY DETECTION through annual testing

Until Next Time, Good Health and Well-Being!

Dave Kettner
All Holistic Health

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Relaxing Hot Body Wax Therapy and Beauty Bath

Do you have aches and pains in the joints of your hands? Do you have rough, dry or cracked hands or feet? If you have either condition, a "Hot Wax Bath" may be the ideal answer for you. It is relaxing, soothing and conditioning.

What is a "Hot Wax Bath"? It is simply a heated container of specially formulated wax. The vessel automatically melts the wax when you turn it on. It keeps the wax at a safe temperature for your sensitive skin. Once the wax (paraffin) is melted, you dip your hand or foot into the container of melted wax. Then you pull your hand out and let it dry a moment and repeat this process five to ten times.

After this process has been repeated you will have a hand coated in layers of warm wax. You then put your hand into a plastic bag that comes with the wax. This protects against oils in the wax getting on clothing or furniture. Next, you put your hand into a terry cloth mitt or wrap it in a towel. You can do two hands or just one at a time.

How many ways can you relax for fifteen minutes? Put on some soft music. Light a few candles. Start heating your aromatherapy dish of fragrance. Step into a soothing hot bath. Just relax in your favorite chair with your eyes closed while the wax works its wonders.

A daily treatment of hot paraffin on your hands and feet will do you a world of good physically and emotionally. It really is a treatment that can soothe the skin and calm the soul.

Once you are done, peel the wax off of your hands and put it back into the wax container to melt and use again. If this was in a therapy or salon situation, you might want to discard the used wax. But, since this is your personal wax unit, why not reuse the wax each time? You did wash your hands before starting, didn't you? Discard or reuse, it is up to you.

You can get the wax melting pot and wax at major department stores such as Wal-Mart or even your local pharmacy store. They come in different sizes and price ranges. Different companies make them. Two brands are Dr. Scholl's and Homedics. You can get a home unit that holds 3 pounds or 6 pounds of wax. The larger unit is easier to put hands and feet into or even an elbow.

You can get scented waxes to go into your wax tub. Pick your favorite fragrance, tangerine, rose, lavender, citrus, peach, wintergreen and more. If you can't fine them at your local medical supply store or beauty store, they are available online.

Until Next Time, Good Health and Well-Being!

Dave Kettner
Intimate Bath and Body

Monday, November 06, 2006

The Underlying Causes of Acne

Acne has increased alarmingly over the last five years. Sales of acne treatments in the United States increased 10.1% in 2005.

This figure represents the strongest growth rate since 2001. It is safe to say that acne is running rampant with no let up in sight.

Acne is caught up in a cycle of destruction that involves our environment, our food and our bodies.

We have technologically hoisted ourselves upon the high and lonely position of being able to orchestrate our own self-destruction.

Director-General James Leape of the conservation group WWF has unequivocally warned, "For more than 20 years we have exceeded the ability of the earth to support a consumptive lifestyle that is unsustainable and we cannot afford to continue down this path."

Leape continued, "If everyone around the world lived as those in America, we would need five planets to support us."

Mother Earth is now like an old engine, sputtering, coughing and she is about to come to a full stop. We have poisoned and raped her. She has reached the point where she almost has nothing left to give.

WWF-Australia Chief Executive Officer Greg Bourne chimed in, "People are turning resources into waste faster than nature can turn waste back into resources."

We have poisoned our drinking water with over 700 chemicals. We intentionally add over 3,000 chemicals to the food we eat.

Pesticides and soil enriching chemicals permeate the food we grow. It is apparent that we are orchestrating our very own demise. Mother Earth sits back and gives as good as she gets.

Your liver is a marvelous filter. It is impossible for us to create a machine that does the work that the liver does.

It eliminates, flushes, cleans, stores, synthesizes, neutralizes, produces and converts to keep your body going.

The liver is the gatekeeper for the internal organs. There are numerous toxins and pollutants that the liver deals with on a daily basis.

These are but a few. Cigarette smoke, household chemicals, exhaust fumes, radiation, and the chemicals dumped into our food and into our water.

Your liver is a key fighter in the battle with acne. The constant bombardment from outside toxins and pollutants ensures that your liver is kept extremely busy.

When we add to the mix the toxins in the food we eat, the liver now comes under direct attack. Working overtime, and under stress, the liver now needs help filtering and eliminating.

The largest organ in the body comes to the rescue...but it’s at a price! The skin chips in helping with elimination.

Soon, the skin becomes overwhelmed and its pores begin to clog and get blocked. That's when acne makes its dreaded appearance.
Acne will always be an indicator of an internal body under stress.

We must stop this madness! If we destroy Mother Earth, where will we live? If we destroy our bodies, where will we live?

Until Next Time, Good Health and Well-Being!

Dave Kettner
Antioxidant Supplements

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Rheumatoid Arthritis: The Search for a Cause and a Cure

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an immune system disease affecting people of all ages. It is most often diagnosed in middle age, but it can also affect children or the elderly. Women are more likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis than men. RA causes chronic inflammation of the joints, specifically the layers between the joints, but also may cause inflammation in other organs of the body.

The cause of rheumatoid arthritis has not yet been discovered. Some people seem to be more likely to develop RA because of their genetic makeup. Something in the environment where they live may trigger the disease. Hormonal or bacterial factors could also be involved in causing RA.

People with rheumatoid arthritis usually experience periods of flares and remissions. It mostly affects symmetrical joints, especially in the fingers, hands, and wrists. The disease varies greatly in individuals, with some developing symptoms very quickly over a short period of time and other experiencing flares and remissions intermittently over several years.

There is no known cure for rheumatoid arthritis, but early detection and treatment can prevent or delay permanent damage to the joints. Combinations of treatments typically result in better control. Medications, plus proper exercise and sufficient rest, as well as joint protection and occasional surgery, produce an overall healthier result for sufferers of rheumatoid arthritis.

Rheumatoid arthritis is diagnosed by an examination of tender or swollen joints, a blood test called the rheumatoid factor (RF), the presence of stiffness in the early morning or after a period of inactivity, bumps or nodules under the skin near joints, and sometimes an x-ray. Not all of these symptoms may be present, and the RF test is positive in only 80 percent of people with RA. Therefore, a combination of factors is needed to diagnose rheumatoid arthritis. Sufferers of RA may be mildly anemic and another test for inflammation called erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) may be elevated. Sometimes people with RA test positive on an antinuclear antibody (ANA) test.

Because rheumatoid arthritis is an immune system disease, anything that affects the immune system (like allergic reactions) may trigger a flare. The medications used to treat RA affect the immune system as well. People suffering from RA need to be careful about exposure to contagious diseases, especially if the medications in their treatment lower the immune system defenses of their body.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a life-long disease. But with new medications, proper exercise and rest, and protection of the joints when needed, people with RA can live long and productive lives.

Until Next Time, Good Health and Well-Being!

Dave Kettner
Anti-Aging Natural Vitamin Supplements