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September Health News and Articles

Autumn Brings Change and Renewal
Summer is ending and autumn brings change and renewal, from heading back to school to entering a harvest. September is filled with fall events and many health-related observances, raising awareness and educating the public on topics as diverse as "Healthy Aging" to "World Rabies Day."
Thyroid Cancer Awareness
A small gland located in the lower part of the neck, the thyroid has intrigued physicians since the Middle Ages. Today, we know the gland controls the body's metabolism through the production of thyroid hormones (T3, T4). 

September is Thyroid Cancer Awareness Month, a worldwide observance that began in 2000 and is sponsored by the Thyroid Cancer Survivors' Association. The annual event is designed to promote thyroid cancer awareness for early detection of the disease and increase research opportunities to find a cure.

Facts on Thyroid Cancer
  • It is the fastest increasing cancer in both men and women, with increased rates of thyroid cancer occurring in all age groups, from children to seniors.
  • There are several types of thyroid cancer. Papillary and follicular are the most common. If detected early, most thyroid cancers are treated successfully.
  • Treatments include surgery, radioactive iodine treatment and chemotherapy.
  • Risk factors associated with thyroid cancer are family history, age and exposure to radiation. (Source: www.thyca.org)
Thyroid & Aging
According to a recent article in the Daily Herald, aging is often associated with fatigue, weight gain, mood changes, hair loss and memory loss. But it could be an underactive thyroid. The medical term is hypothyroidism, in which the thyroid doesn't produce enough T3 or T4 to meet the body's demands. An underactive thyroid can also increase the risk of Alzheimer's, heart disease and a decrease in bone density.

The key to making a true determination about the overall health of your thyroid lies in proper testing. Health Testing Centers can provide a full range of screenings through our:
National Healthy Aging Month
A great deal of effort goes into living a healthy life. But it takes an even greater effort (along with luck) to age with good health. Throughout the month of September, there's special emphasis on what you can do to promote a healthier lifestyle as the clock moves forward.

Good eating, good health habits, staying active and having a positive outlook all contribute to better health at any age. Use this September to take stock: how would you rank your health at this stage in your life? What would you do if time and money was unlimited in improving your health? What are you prepared realistically to do that will make you feel and look better?

Recognize too, there are good things about growing older. One report says America's oldest citizens are getting healthier, living longer and doing better financially. A 65-year-old today can expect to live, on average, another 20 years. (Source: npr.org)

Many older people say that they have less stress and a tendency to slow down and savor life as they gain in years. Experts in aging offer these additional tips: 
  • Limit salt and sugar and... no surprise...quit smoking!
  • Relax your face by smiling more (you'll feel better too).
  • To enhance taste, breathe deep with warm, moist air to clear your nasal passages.
  • When angry or depressed, think about all the things for which you are grateful. You'll be surprised how long the list can be.
  • Turn off all electronics and commit to a quiet few minutes at least once a day.
  • Have something to do; something to love and something to hope for.
Aging specialists says it's never too late to take control of your health and gauge the effects of aging. At Health Testing Center, we couldn't agree more. Check out our comprehensive Anti-Aging panels that include:
National Cholesterol Education Month & World Heart Day
September, proclaimed National Cholesterol Education Month, is sponsored by the National Heart Lung & Blood Institute. This annual event raises awareness of the role that both good and bad cholesterol play in our overall health.

Most of us know that high levels of "bad" cholesterol (LDL) are harbingers of cardiovascular disease. Lower levels of LDL can lower your risk of heart attack and stroke.

 But did you know that cholesterol - a waxy fat-like substance found in human cells - is manufactured within your own body? That means it's not necessary to take in more cholesterol from the foods you eat. Saturated fat, found mostly in animal foods raises your LDL more than anything else in your diet. Other factors that influence LDL: genetics (a family history of high cholesterol), excess weight, the amount of physical activity you engage in (regular exercise can lower LDL and raise your "good" or HDL cholesterol), age, gender, alcohol intake and the amount of stress in your life. (Source:Medicine.Net.com)

September 29 is World Heart Day
Created in 2000 by the World Heart Federation to educate people from around the globe that heart disease and stroke are the leading causes of death, this annual event is held each September 29. 

According to World Heart, nearly 18 million lives are lost each year worldwide from heart disease and stroke. New research indicates that more than 42 million women have heart disease and are now on equal footing with men for a cardiac event. Both sexes could reduce their incidence of heart attack and stroke by eliminating tobacco and controlling diet and exercise - the main risk factors. For women, in particular, a combination of fat around the abdomen, high blood pressure, high blood sugar and high triglycerides have a greater impact on women than on men (Source:nbc.com/news

At Health Testing Centers we honor National Cholesterol Education Month and World Heart Day by providing the following preventive and diagnostic tests:

Heart Healthy Screenings Level I - convenient panel includes a Basic Health Screening, Lipid Profile and a C-Reactive Protein (hs-CRP) test.
Heart Healthy Screenings Level II - comprehensive cardiac panel includes a Basic Health Screening, NMR LipoProfile, Lipid Profile, Homocysteine and a C-Reactive Protein (hs-CRP) test.

Lipid Profile - measures total cholesterol levels in the body.
C-Reactive Protein (hs-CRP) - assesses possible risk for heart disease.
NMR LipoProfile - an advanced cardiovascular test that measures size and volume of cholesterol that can build up in the body.
VAP Cholesterol Test - Lipoprotein Subfractionation Profile, designed for anyone with a family history of cardiac or vascular disease, this test provides more detail and better information than standard cholesterol testing.
The Importance of Whole Grains
Whole Grains Month is in September along with Fruits & Veggies - More Matters.

With fall in the air, it's a perfect time to promote better, healthier eating habits. Fruits, vegetables and whole grains are an important part of a healthy diet to reduce the chances of heart disease, bone loss and diabetes, among other diseases.

For some, however, allergies and autoimmune disorders make healthy choices more difficult. Find out if you have an allergy to gluten, a sticky protein found in foods made from grassy grains, by taking our Gluten Allergy Test at Health Testing Centers. It's a qualitative allergen specific blood test that is simple and painless. Allergy reactions to gluten can result in mild to severe reactions. 

National Celiac Disease Awareness Day is Sept 13
A genetic digestive disorder that damages the small intestine and interferes with food nutrient absorption, celiac disease was originally thought to be a rare childhood syndrome. But it strikes  all ages, with more than two million Americans currently diagnosed.

Celiac patients can't eat foods or products containing gluten, commonly found in wheat, rye and barley. Gluten can also be found in everyday products, including vitamins and lip balms. Symptoms of gluten intolerance range from stomach pain to chronic diarrhea and weight loss.

When children are affected, their normal growth can be stunted due to lack of nutrient absorption. The result can be failure to thrive in infants, delayed growth in children, delayed puberty and serious dental problems. (Source: National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse (NDDIC). 

At Health Testing Centers, take our easy, cost-effective Celiac Disease Antibody Screening, the most sensitive test available to the detect the presence of antibodies specific to celiac disease.
More Interesting Articles
Bet You Didn't Know...
Five Fun Facts about the Fall Season 
  • The name "Indian Summer," often heard in fall, is derived from a Native American term meaning warm, as in warm weather.
  • The traditional pumpkin is a member of the gourd family.
  • "Bobbing" for apples is of Roman origin.
  • Leaves get their red color from trapped glucose; brown comes from the waste that is trapped inside the leaf.
  • The season we refer to as "Fall" is attributed to leaves that die and fall to the ground and probably originated about 500 years ago when terms like "fall of the leaf" and "fall of the year" were common in Middle English speech. (Source: www.squidoo.com)

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