Tag Archives: Heart Disease

Stinky Breath Or Stroke: How’s That For A Choice?

Staying under the covers is the only thing that makes sense some days.

Take, for instance, the day I got out of bed and started reading the paper while I was walking Buzz, The Garbage Disposal That Walks Like A Dog. That was when I learned that my daily habit of keeping my teeth clean and my breath minty fresh was about to kill me.

Scientists branded the products . . . a health “disaster” claiming they raised blood pressure by killing off vital bacteria which helps blood vessels to dilate.

Using Corsodyl, which contains a powerful antiseptic and widely available in stores across the UK, can push up blood pressure within hours, the team discovered after testing it on a group of healthy volunteers.

Professor Amrita Ahluwalia, who led the study, said: “Killing off all these bugs each day is a disaster, when small rises in blood pressure have significant impact on morbidity and mortality from heart disease and stroke.”

Seriously, dudes, I have got to stop reading the news. It’s getting quite depressing.

The differences in blood pressure were apparent “within one day” of the mouthwash being used, the study published in the journal Free Radical Biology And Medicine revealed.

A two-point rise in blood pressure increased the risk of dying from heart disease by seven per cent and stroke by ten per cent, according to separate research.

Prof Ahluwalia, from Queen Mary University of London, said: “We are not telling people to stop using antiseptic mouthwashes if they have a gum or tooth infection – but we would ask why anyone else would want to.”

Apparently the bugs in your mouth produce nitrite, which is needed to promote the healthy dilation of blood vessels in the body. Without the nitrite, the vessels don’t dilate and your blood pressure goes up.

I wouldn’t say I’m shocked — because lately it seems that everything we do, eat, drink, or watch is bad for us and it’s only a matter of time before the study announcing these sad facts comes out — but I am disappointed. I wouldn’t have thought that scouring my mouth of the germs that cause bad breath would be anything but good.

No matter how hard you try, you’re going to miss some food particles in your teeth and those food bits will decompose and that will have a deleterious effect on your breath. I’d used mouth wash as a mid-day breath cleanser, but that’s right out after this.

It looks like I’ll be going back to gum from now on.

Oh, wait.

Never mind.

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It’s Gotta Be Juuuuusssstttt Right

by Richard

So, there I was, sitting in my chair, facing the television, when I realized I had no idea what was going on up there and I’d reread the same page in the book at least four times. I was tired.

I toddled off to bed, secure in the knowledge that I surely would be getting enough sleep to feel rested and refreshed the next day. That was around midnight and I had to get up before 7 am the next day. Thinking back, no, I wasn’t getting enough sleep.

Turns out, that’s not a good thing. Especially if you do it on a consistent basis. Keep cutting yourself short in the zzzzzz department and you’re going to be no good to yourself, no good to your sigot and definitely no good to the little dudes and dudettes running around the house. And it’s not just about mood, either.

Sleep is the critical element that allows you to attain success in your peak performance, weight loss and longevity goals. No matter how clean you eat or how often you exercise, if you’re chronically sleep-deprived and stressed, or if you’re not getting regular quality sleep, you’re sabotaging your efforts.

Sleep deprivation has profound effects on hormones that control metabolism, appetite, mood, concentration, memory retention, and cravings. It is associated with high blood pressure, elevated stress hormone levels, irregular heartbeat, and compromised immune function, and it drastically increases your risk for obesity and heart disease. Results from the 2004-2006 U.S. National Health Interview Survey indicated that adults who usually slept less than six hours were much more likely to smoke, drink more than five glasses of alcohol, not exercise, and be obese. Interestingly, adults who slept more than nine hours also engaged in these unhealthy behaviors.

But the question rises, then, why is a lack of sleep bad for us? Just as we need to know: Why is too much sleep bad for us?

We’re not really sure about it. Sorry. But here’s a bit about what’s going on. Your body has a lot of cryptochromes, a lot of very ancient proteins concentrated in your eyes and skin. They are sensitive to the blues of dawn and dusk. When stimulated, they signal the body to stop producing serotonin, which has been keeping you going all day, and produce, instead, melatonin, which helps you get a good night’s sleep. In the morning, the pineal gland reverses the process, thanks to the cryptochromes.

That’s your natural sleep rhythm. You know what really disrupts this cycle? Artificial lights. Seems that being exposed to a lot of that will disrupt the way your body balances serotonin and melatonin.

So, here’s a bit of an idea. About 30 minutes or so before you go to bed, try lowering the light levels in your room. Get your body used to the change between daylight and night. Don’t make it as sudden as flicking a switch.

You never know. You might actually feel good in the morning. Sure, that’ll be different, but sometimes different is good.



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Maybe You Should Sleep On That Empty Stomach

by Richard

So that’s why I’m always so hungry.

According to some recent research, it seems as if a lack of good, solid sleep can make dudes hungry, while the lack of that same sweet, sweet slumber can do a number on dudettes’ hearts.

According to a study published recently in the research journal SLEEP, men who get less-than-optimal amounts of sleep will find themselves getting hungrier than other dudes who get enough sleep.

Not only that, but, according to another study in that same issue of SLEEP,  females who do not get enough sleep have a higher chance of heart disease and heart-related issues than males who also are not sleeping enough.

“Our results point to the complexity of the relationship between sleep duration and energy balance regulation. The state of energy balance, whether someone is in a period of weight loss or weight gain, may be critical in the metabolic and hormonal responses to sleep restriction.”

Which, in English, means just what I said. If you dudes don’t get enough sleep, you’re probably going to be gaining weight. When you feel hungry, you tend to eat. Eat more and you will weigh more. And, of course, we all want to look good for the ladies, which means not gaining weight.

So, of course, that leads to the following scenario, dreamed of by dudes since time immemorial.

“I need to take a nap, honey. I’m trying to lose weight.”

Okay, so it might be true, but, somehow, I just don’t see that working all that well in Casa de Dude.

Still, I’d rather be the guy who’s having to make sure he avoids unconscious snacking than the dudette who has to make sure she sleeps enough so she has a better heart expectancy. That, dudes, is rough.

The takeaway on this is, of course, get some sleep. Stop staying up late watching television and head to bed when you should. It’s not like you’re going to be able to sleep late, right?

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