It’s Hemochromatosis Screening Awareness Month, and hemochromatosis is an inherited disorder where your body accumulates too much iron.
Patients usually don’t show serious signs until they’re over 40 years old, so it’s important to get screened in routine blood tests.
Hemochromatosis is especially common in those from European ancestry, affecting approximately 1 in 400 of them. Talk to your doctor about when you should be screened.
If you suffer from hemochromatosis, your body absorbs too much iron from your diet, as much as 4x too much, and since your body only has a few ways to get rid of iron, it accumulates over time in your liver, bones, joints, pancreas, and skin.
The extra iron in your system can cause organ damage, and iron deposits can darken your skin. It can also increase your risk of diabetes, heart attack, arthritis, and some cancers.
The wrong level of iron in the brain has been tied to neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, epilepsy, and multiple sclerosis.
Symptoms of hemochromatosis include chronic fatigue, joint pain, especially in your knuckles, memory fog, an irregular heartbeat, and abdominal pain.
Getting iron levels down with therapeutic blood removal, or phlebotomy, is the most common treatment. Regular blood donations and a hemochromatosis-friendly diet can help you lower iron levels.
Chewing tobacco can be just as dangerous for your health as other forms of tobacco. It’s time to quit for Through with the Chew Week.
Chewing tobacco is tied to many mouth problems, including mouth, tongue, cheek, and gum cancer, and can also cause cancer in the esophagus and pancreas.
Chew can cause leukoplakia, or gray-white patches in the mouth that can become cancer.
Chewing tobacco also stains your teeth, causes bad breath, and destroys your gum tissue.
If you regularly use smokeless tobacco, you’re more likely to have gum disease, cavities, tooth decay, and expensive dental issues.
All forms of tobacco, including the smokeless kind, increase your risk of heart disease and high blood pressure.
When you chew tobacco, you also raise your risk of heart attack, stroke, and serious pregnancy complications.
Smokeless tobacco can also lead to nicotine poisoning and death in kids who mistake it for candy.
January is National Hot Tea Month. Tea has many health benefits that make it the perfect beverage for chilly winter days.
The antioxidants in green tea can boost your endurance while exercising, and they increase your ability to burn fat as a fuel.
A 2016 study found green tea drinkers lowered their chance of stroke by 35%.
Studies show drinking tea could help reduce the risk of heart attack.
Tea might help protect your bone health, reducing breaks from falls.
Antioxidants in green tea can help protect your skin and reduce inflammation.
Japanese researchers found that tea can decrease tooth loss and doesn’t erode enamel.
Herbal teas might help soothe your digestive system, like ginger teas that calm nausea.
February is American Heart Month, and we’re raising awareness with videos from the American Heart Association.
Get the facts about heart failure:
The signs of heart attack are different for women:
Know what a heart failure diagnosis actually means:
Are you having heart surgery? This advice can help:
You don’t have to go through rehab after your heart surgery alone:
Know the signs of stroke:
Looking for more info, heart healthy recipes, or tutorials like CPR? Check out the American Heart Association’s Youtube channel.
November is National Diabetes Month, and now’s the time to raise awareness and protect yourself.
86 million Americans are at risk of developing diabetes. Learn how you can protect yourself starting at home.
Understanding your diabetes can be kind of like football, from U.S. News and World Report.
Visit our diabetes section to learn more about taking care of you or your family’s disease.
Diabetes is more common and more serious than many Americans realize. Protect yourself now.
You can help stop type 2 diabetes in its tracks with smart shopping and eating. Find resources from the American Diabetes Association to get started.
Exercise is an important part of taking care of and preventing diabetes. Programs like this can help, from NPR.
Interested in learning more about diabetes from our different partners’ health experts? Check out our events page for presentations and videos.
As you make your New Year’s Resolutions this year, we want to help! Not only do we help you get the medical care and preventive care that keep you healthy, we also want to help you make healthy life choices.
A healthy diet and good nutrition can both help you be the best that you can be, a key part of making healthy life choices.
- Eating a diet rich in vegetables and fruits can reduce the risk of heart disease, including heart attack and stroke
- Eating a diet rich in certain vegetables and fruits may protect against certain types of cancer
- Diets rich in healthy fiber can reduce the risk of heart disease, obesity, and Type 2 diabetes
- Eating vegetables rich in potassium can lower blood pressure, decrease bone loss, and the risk of kidney stones
We know that knowing what to eat or finding healthy recipes can be hard. But making small changes in diet can affect your health in a big way, and we have people to help.
Members can call our Quality & Medical Management Department at 1-800-851-3379, ext. 8112 for more information. You can also check this blog regularly, follow our Twitter and Facebook for weekly recipes, or look at our Pinterest for hundreds of recipes and resources.
Getting In Shape
Exercise is also an important part of being the healthiest you can be. Regular physical activity provides a variety of benefits, like:
- Controlling your weight
- Reducing your risk of cardiovascular disease
- Reducing your risk of Type 2 diabetes
- Reducing your risk of some cancers
- Strengthening your bones and muscles
- Improving your mental health and mood
- Improving your ability to do daily activities or prevent falls as an older adult
- Increasing your chance of living longer
Clearly fitness can improve your health, but we know that gym memberships and workout equipment can be expensive.
That’s why we have teamed up with a number of gyms and fitness locations to give our members discounted memberships and rates. Look at that list and find a location that fits into your budget.
Learn more about health and wellness with Health Alliance.