Herbal Health Supplements For Athletes

Herbal health supplements have numerous benefits especially to an athlete who needs more energy than a common person. Today, we want to be more energetic and we want to do more our daily life. Athletes require more energy. They want to run faster, jump higher, throw longer, play better and win their sporting event.

It is a well proven fact that the steroids involve the risk of health dangers. Athletes were looking for supplements that are safe and are effective in enhancing endurance. Herbal supplements suffice the requirement as they are safe and have very few or no side effects. They reduce the risks manifold that the manufactured steroids and drugs generate. Herbal supplements are an excellent source of energy and strength for an athlete. For example, Ginko Biloba is an herb which can increase an individual’s mental power, it helps in increasing energy levels too. The herb is a safe nutrition supplement for athletes when taken under strict medical supervision.

Common herbs like turmeric and ginger help athletes by boosting their energy levels. Though they are not regarded as energy producing herbs but they help in easy and better digestion of good. As better digestion means more release of energy, these herbs help trigger the release of energy and increase overall energy levels in an athlete. An herb named Gotu Kola was used by Indian Americans as an energy giving tonic. It is believed that this herb facilitates clear thinking in the brain. It also boosts the flow of blood through blood vessels. Another herb named Siberian Ginseng is an herbal supplement for athletes. Athletes from Russia as well as all over the world used to take Ginseng regularly to increase their stamina and reduce their stress. Licorice, is an herb that increases energy levels in an athlete. It arouses the adrenal secretions and reduces the symptoms of allergies.

The best herbal supplements for everyone, including athletes, are manufactured from standardized herbal extracts. This means that they are the finest ingredients available. Look for the herbs that you are interested in at local health food stores. Here are some worth mentioning:
Eleuthero: Helps in increasing oxygenation of body cells. It boosts the enduring power.
Fo-ti- : It provides strength and improves cardiovascular system.
Codonopsis : It is a mild substitute of Ginseng. It strengthens muscles while reducing weakness and stress. It also enhances digestive power and thereby increasing energy levels.
Nettles : They are highly nutritious and are a good source of protein. They counteract fatigue and help in building blood cells.
Dandelion root : This herb helps in improving liver functions. It helps sportspersons to pull through quickly after exercise.
Dipsacus : This herb is known to stimulate metabolism while developing ligaments and bones too. In China, this herb is used for discomfort in lower back and knees.
Cayenne : This natural herb removes toxin in blood. It stimulates entire body.

Herbal supplements for athletes are unique in their own way and are finding their use in all the sporting events in modern times.


Vaginal Deliveries

Recovery time from a vaginal delivery is usually shorter than the recovery time from a Cesarean section. But sometimes it can take a while, especially if you’ve experienced any lacerations or tears.

The perineum, or the region between the vagina and rectum, is vulnerable to tearing during delivery. Some studies show that women are more likely to tear during their first vaginal delivery, probably because this is the first time the area has been stretched to that degree. But whether it’s your first or your tenth, delivery technique can make a huge difference. One study revealed that if normal, spontaneous vaginal deliveries are unrushed and occur in a controlled setting with a nurse, doctor, or midwife guiding the pushing process, there is a lower risk of obstetrical trauma. Many health experts recommend perineal massage in the weeks prior to delivery as a way to lower the chances of tearing. Unfortunately, some women experience tears despite their own best efforts and the efforts of their health care professional.

Tears and Lacerations

Tears and lacerations vary in severity and are classified accordingly:

• First-degree tears are surface tears that involve the skin of the perineum and the vaginal connective tissue, usually near the vaginal opening. No muscles are involved. Healing time for first-degree tears is rapid, and women usually experience little discomfort. Stitches may or may not be required.

• Second-degree tears are deeper tears that involve the skin, connective tissue, and underlying muscles. Second-degree tears almost always require stitches, and healing time can vary. Most often, the stitches will dissolve on their own. Some women report feeling fine in a matter of weeks, others complain of experiencing pain for longer periods of time.

• Third-degree tears are more severe and involve the skin, connective tissue, and the external anal sphincter muscle, the muscle that you can squeeze to stop yourself from going to the bathroom.

• Fourth-degree tears are the most severe and can involve a tear through both the internal and external anal sphincter muscles and lining of the bowel. These tears often result in the loss of anal sphincter control, as well as fecal urgency and/or incontinence.

While third- and fourth-degree perineal tears are not common, they can happen to anyone. There are a few risk factors which may increase the chances:

• Larger babies

• Occiput posterior deliveries (baby is sunny-side up, or delivered faceup, instead of facedown)

• Nulliparity (delivery of first babies)

• Extended second stage of labor, or if the pushing stage lasts longer than an hour

• Midline episiotomies — unfortunately, some women end up tearing further than the controlled incision

• Forceps delivery

Third- and fourth-degree lacerations can be extremely painful and may interfere with all sorts of activities, including intercourse, for quite some time after delivery. Many women find going to the bathroom, especially having a bowel movement, a huge challenge. One woman with a third-degree tear told me that having bowel movements after her delivery was worse than the actual delivery itself.

The pain can persist for months after the baby arrives. A thorough follow-up is very important, so make sure that you see your health care professional several times after the delivery. Your doctor should examine the area and make sure the anorectal area is functioning properly. For many women, the pain and discomfort will subside within a few months and normal activities, including sex, can be resumed.

Some moms experience uncontrollable gas and/or fecal incontinence down the line. These problems should be brought to the attention of your physician immediately. In some cases, additional treatment may be necessary.

Episiotomies

An episiotomy is a controlled surgical incision made in the perineal area (between the vagina and rectum), prior to the delivery. In the past, the episiotomy was used routinely in order to lower the risk of vaginal tears during deliveries. But because newer studies have shown that these routine episiotomies have no real benefit for the mother, and may actually worsen the outcome and prolong healing time, episiotomies are becoming less common. In fact, several studies reveal that more severe lacerations were associated with the occurrence of an episiotomy.

Despite the new research about episiotomies, some women still get them. And it’s certainly true that in some cases, an episiotomy may be necessary, especially if the baby presents in an unusual position or is overly large; it may also be necessary if the doctor needs to speed up the delivery for health or medical reasons pertaining to the mom and/or the baby.

Recovery from an episiotomy is a lot like the recovery from a tear; it all depends on the extent of the cut or laceration. For most women, the pain and tenderness will subside significantly in one to two months. If a woman experiences a serious tear in addition to the surgical incision, recovery time may be prolonged.

C-section

The recovery from a Cesarean section, or the delivery of a baby through an abdominal incision, varies from woman to woman. In general, recovery time tends to be longer than the time it takes to recover from a normal, vaginal delivery, unless, of course, a severe tear or laceration is involved.

Right off the bat, the incision site will most likely be sore, although some women report that their incision feels numb and tingly. The pain will gradually subside and the numbness should lessen as well (although I’ve spoken to a few women who never fully regained total sensation in that area). Many women also complain of itchiness around the scar during the healing process. If the itchiness becomes intolerable, speak with your health care provider for options. Some doctors will recommend soothing creams, but others do not, so it’s important to get his/her opinion.

Some women who have had a C-section complain of cramps caused by the buildup of gas in the abdomen after surgery. Walking around or light exercise can help. This will usually go away within the first few days post-surgery, but it can linger, especially if you are not moving at all. Speak with your health care professional if it becomes a problem.

Don’t be shocked by the way the incision looks! For many women, seeing a dark red scar on the abdomen can be upsetting. But remember, it fades with time (and will likely look a whole lot better in six to eight weeks) and most doctors make the incision low enough that your pubic hair will eventually cover it.

Certain activities may be difficult right after a C-section; even coughing, sneezing, and laughing can be uncomfortable. Lifting anything heavy is out of the question, and it will be a while before you can have sex again. You also may need to wait to drive a car, especially if you experience pain buckling your seat belt or getting in and out of the car. Getting up and moving are important parts of the healing process, but you shouldn’t expect to run a marathon.

Here’s a good piece of advice: Don’t overdo it! Oftentimes, women don’t seem to realize that they have just had major abdominal surgery and they feel frustrated that they are unable to move around freely or lift heavy things. One woman I spoke to complained that the stairs in her house posed a major challenge. Another woman was upset that she was in too much pain to be able to cook for her older child. It normally takes an average of six to eight weeks to recover completely from a Cesarean, and for some women it can take several months.

Here are a few more tips to help speed your recovery from a C-section:

• Accept help. As simple as it sounds, it can make a world of difference. Many women are used to doing everything themselves. But this is not the time to be superwoman. Husbands, siblings, parents, friends, and even in-laws make great helpers. If they offer, take them up on it!

• Take it nice and slowly. Many women feel okay by that six-to-eight-week mark, but if you’re not among them, don’t do anything that makes you uncomfortable. Overexerting yourself can actually prolong the healing process.

• Don’t neglect your bowels. If you’re taking pain medications, be aware that certain types can cause constipation, which in itself can become a serious problem. Make sure that your bowel movements are regular, and if this starts to become an issue, speak with your health care provider. Stool softeners and laxatives might be necessary.

• Accept the mess. With tons of foot traffic through your home and visits from your extended family, your house may get messy. But you’re recovering, so leave it. This is a great opportunity to ask your mother-in-law to help clean up. Even if the mess causes you stress, it’s better to leave it for someone else to handle than for you to overexert yourself. Believe me, there will be many messes in the future you can dirty your hands with!

The above excerpt is a digitally scanned reproduction of text from print. Although this excerpt has been proofread, occasional errors may appear due to the scanning process. Please refer to the finished book for accuracy.


Skin Cancer And The Health Benefits Of Nutrition Supplements

The three most common types of skin cancers are basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma. Each are named after the type of skin cell from which it arises. Basal and squamous cell carcinoma are the two most common and curable types of skin cancer. Melanoma is less common, but the most serious, and is responsible for 75% of all skin cancer related deaths.

Skin cancers are most often caused by overexposure to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays. These UV rays destroy the genetic material (DNA) in the skin cells, causing severe tissue damage and cancer.

Basal cell carcinoma is the most common of the three forms of skin cancer. Overexposure to strong sunlight is the major factor. It rarely spreads elsewhere in the body or kills. Although, it is still considered malignant because it can cause substantial disfigurement and destruction by invading surrounding tissue.

The first sign of basal cell carcinoma is a large pearly looking lump usually occurring on the face near the eyes or nose. The lump then becomes an ulcer with a raw, moist center and a hard border that may bleed. Scabs continually form over the ulcer. The scabs come off, but the ulcer never heals.

In squamous cell carcinoma, the underlying skin cells are damaged. This leads to the development of a tumor or lump under the skin. The ears, face, hands and lower lip are affected in most cases. The lump may resemble a wart or an ulceration that never heals. Detected early enough, treatment is effective.

Malignant melanoma is the most dangerous form of skin cancer. It can be cured if discovered and treated early. With this form of skin cancer, a tumor occurs from the pigment producing cells of the deeper layers of the skin. It often begins as a lesion that looks like a mole.

Most moles appear early in life, so be aware of new moles that appear after the age of 40. Also be aware of any mole that appears unusual; changes in size, color or texture. They should be looked at right away by a dermatologist.

Warning Signs Of Skin Cancer

1. A skin growth that increases in size and/or appears pearly, translucent, brown, tan, black or multicolored.

2. A mole, birthmark or beauty mark that changes color, grows in size or thickness, changes in texture or becomes irregular in outline.

3. A spot or growth that hurts, itches, crusts, scabs over, erodes or bleeds.

Nutrition Supplements

Manufacturers are now incorporating vitamins A, C, D and E in sunscreen to help protect the skin. Many nutritionists and holistic doctors recommend oral supplements of all the antioxidants to neutralize the free radicals created by ultraviolet radiation; as well as by oxidation within the body, that can harm DNA and both internal and external cells.

Coenzyme Q10 improves cellular oxygenation. Take 100 milligrams daily.

Evening primrose oil for cellular protection. Take 2 capsules before meals.

Selenium is a powerful free radical scavenger. Take 50 – 200 micrograms daily.

Vitamin A in the form of beta carotene. Take 25,000 – 50,000 IU daily. Taking an extra vitamin A before an expected outing helps prevent the temporary night blindness that often follows exposure to extremely bright lights.

Vitamin B complex – the B vitamins are necessary for normal cell division and function. Take 100 milligrams daily.

Vitamin C plus bioflavonoids is powerful anti-cancer agent. Take 1,5000 – 5,000 milligrams daily in divided doses to help prevent pigment clumping and skin sags by strengthening the supportive collagen.

Vitamin D. Sunscreens as low as SPF 8 block the body’s formation of natural vitamin D from sunlight on the bare skin. Take 400 IU daily, if not provided by fortified milk or a daily multivitamin.

Vitamin E. In a study, participants taking 200 IU of vitamin E each day for a year reduced their free radical level by 26 percent.

Herbal Nutrition Supplements

Gotu kola contains compounds which have an excellent reputation in supporting skin health, increasing the concentration of antioxidants and maintaining healthy blood supply to the affected area. Available in capsule form, follow packaging directions.

Marigold (Calendula officinalis) is one of the best and most well known herbs for skin health. It helps to maintain healthy skin and tissue health. It is available as a cream to be applied topically. Follow packaging directions.

Chaparral is a bitter herb that acts as a free radical scavenger and protects the skin from the harmful effects of radiation and sun exposure. Available in capsule form, follow packaging directions.