Continue Reading

Sleep therapy + snoring

The grinding of teeth which led to a tooth cracking and the root canal treatment forced me to seek a strong remedy.

A two-sided sleep appliance called Dorsal:

This will obviously prevent further tooth cracking, but as a result of the focus on sleep, I discovered that I snore (using Snorelab app – a simple app).

SNORING ISSUE AND REMEDY

My snorelab score ranges from 22 to 79. I’ve done 5 tests by now over one month. According to the snorelab app website, I’m a MODERATE SNORER.

Anyone with a score higher than 100 should definitely get themselves screened for Obstructive Sleep Apnea, as they frequently require a stronger treatment: CPAP” 

Do I have sleep apnea? Probably not. “snoring does not necessarily mean you have sleep apnea. snoring becomes concerning when it is combined with gasping, choking or if you stop breathing while sleeping. [Source]”

CAUSES OF SNORING AND SOLUTIONS

Excess Weight
Nasal issues
Sleep Position
Sleeping with an Open Mouth
Weak Throat Muscles

Tonsils

 

Continue Reading

How to loosen tight internal muscles of the face (nose/ cheeks, etc.)

Continuous computer work has led to static load on facial muscles which “crunch” when the neck is rotated. The crunching occurs in the face.

EXERCISES

From Livestrong

Facial Yoga

Facial yoga is a type of facial exercise that helps to promote blood circulation and relaxation within the muscles of the face. One of the basic facial yoga techniques is to first warm the palms of the hand by rubbing them together for several seconds and then to place each palm over the eyes. Next, you want to perform circular motions around the eyes with your palms, which will help to increase blood circulation in this region of the face. In addition to relieving muscle tension around the eye sockets, it’s also effective at reducing black circles around the eyes. A second type of facial yoga involves massaging the entire face in an effort to improve blood circulation to nearly every muscle of the face. To use this technique, first inhale/exhale rapidly for a 10 count to get the blood flowing. Next, start at the chin with both hands and gently massage up to the forehead using small circular motions with both sets of fingers.

Jaw Stretch

Loosen the muscles controlling the jaws by using the lower-jaw stretch. Open your mouth about an inch and move your lower jaw to the right as far as you can without experiencing any pain. Hold it there for about two seconds before relaxing. Do one side at a time and complete a total of 10 repetitions to each side. Make sure your mouth stays open approximately 1 inch during this exercise.

Smile

Simply smiling helps to loosen most of the facial muscles of your face, including those controlling your cheeks, lips and eyes. Smile as wide as you can, hold for a moment and then relax your face. Do at least 10 repetitions per set.

Progressive Muscle Relaxation

This technique is designed to promote full-body relaxation, but it can also be modified to relax any one part of the body, such as muscles of the face. Before starting, you should find a quiet spot where you can sit back and relax. Close your eyes the entire time and take a few deep breaths before beginning. Start by tensing the muscles of your face as much as you can using grimacing facial expressions; hold for 10 seconds and then release. Take several deep breathes, and you will feel your facial muscles begin to relax. Alternatively, you can focus on the top facial muscles first and work your way down to the jaw and neck muscles last. Try both ways and see which works best for you. The keys to loosening up your face muscles using this technique is to remain in a comfortable position with your eyes closed and to breathe deeply the entire time.

Air Kisses

Pucker your lips, but keep your brow smooth as you blow air kisses four times. Place two fingers to your lips and blow air kisses again for three or four repetitions. Hagen says this exercise works to keep the lips strong.

Puffy Cheeks

Puff out both of your cheeks and shift the air in your mouth from one cheek to the other. Continue the exercise until you feel you are out of breath. Repeat the exercise three times to help keep your cheeks firm.

Continue Reading

Why Kegel exercises are NOT the solution to recovery of continence after prostate surgery

The idea that Kegel exercises are “the” solution to the incontinence problem is fundamentally flawed. It assumes that the stronger you make your pelvic floor muscles the better your continence gets. But this is a trap. It then implies that one has to keep doing pelvic floor exercises for the whole of one’s life, otherwise incontinence will come back again.

This is an extremely inefficient “solution”.

Instead, we need to retrain the entire muskulo-skeletal and neurological system to take on new responsibilities. We need to challenge the entire abdomen and related area to learn new way of functioniong. When the entire abdominal area reprograms itself to take on new responsibilities, we will not need to undertake any more special exercises.

This is somewhat like the child who has to learn how to become continent. The child merely pays attention to the relevant muscles and over the course of a few months becomes continent. We do not tell the child to keep exercising specific muscles. Likewise, when we do this properly, there is no need to exercise or strengthen a specific muscle after that.

I gave up Kegel exercises for roughly after the first 4 months after I realised that this was not the kind of thing I wanted to achieve. I wanted to lead my normal life without thinking about my pelvic floor.

One of my physios, Terry, showed me why retraining is important. I extrapolated and almost completely dropped all kegel exercises as soon as possible after I started jogging downhill.

So far I find that this hypothesis is correct, because I have seen continuous improvement incontinence regardless of the fact that I am no longer doing any Kegel exercises.

Continue Reading

What is the current state of knowledge regarding cholesterol? Small LDL particles do matter, but these reduce when you eat saturated fat.

MAIN PRINCIPLE 1: Cholesterol level (in all its complexity) is just ONE of many predictors of heart disease. Further, in most cases its impact is NOT what has been commonly known to doctors. Things are far more complicated. One must not jump to any conclusions based on any cholesterol level figures. The data need to be considered VERY CAREFULLY, and together with a large number of other factors, such as C-reactive protein and homocysteine, apolipoprotein and many others.

MAIN PRINCIPLE 2: 80 to 90 per cent of the body’s cholesterol is genetically programmed and is produced by the body. “Cholesterol is a vital component of every cell membrane on Earth. In other words, there is no life on Earth that can live without cholesterol.” [Source] + “cholesterol is one of the “most vital” molecules in the body and prevents infection, cancer, muscle pain and other conditions in elderly people.” [Source – read the paper here]. Don’t bother about cholesterol in things you eat (e.g. eggs and prawns).

The body tightly regulates the amount of cholesterol in the blood by controlling its production of cholesterol. When your dietary intake of cholesterol goes down, your body makes more. When you eat larger amounts of cholesterol, your body makes less [Source]

For six years [Indian researcher, Malhotra] had registered how many people had died from a heart attack among more than one million employees of the Indian railways. According to Malhotra’s report; employees who lived in Madras had the highest mortality. It was six to seven times higher than in Punjab, the district with the lowest mortality, and the people from Madras also died at a much younger age. People in Punjab consumed almost seventeen times more fat than people from Madras and most of it was animal fat. In addition they also smoked much more than in Madras. [Source: Uffe Ravnskov, Ignore the Awkward.: How the Cholesterol Myths Are Kept Alive]

And DO NOT CUT DOWN SATURATED FATS (but the middle path principle applies).

START BY READING THESE BOOKS

Uffe Ravnskov, Ignore the Awkward.: How the Cholesterol Myths Are Kept Alive

and Dr. Malcolm Kendrick’s The Great Cholesterol Con: The Truth About What Really Causes Heart Disease and How to Avoid It

And watch this:

and

 

WHAT IS THE CORRELATION BETWEEN DIETARY FAT AND HEART DISEASE?

Very little. This chart gives it all away (the white line is the FRAUDULENT line presented by a “medical scientist” to fool the world. The other numbers are the real numbers. No correlation. Mexicans consumer a large proportion of their calories from fat but have very little cardiac disease. There is tons of other data that confirms that there is NO correlation between consumption of fat (as generally understood) and heart disease.

WHAT IS THE CORRELATION BETWEEN DIETARY FAT AND HEART DISEASE?

This, too, is very weak. “After an examination of almost one thousand patients during surgery, American and world-renowned heart surgeon Michael DeBakey came up with the same message: Atherosclerosis has nothing to do with the concentration of cholesterol in the blood.” ( Garrett HA and others. JAMA 1964;189:655-9.) – cited in Uffe Ravnskov, Ignore the Awkward.: How the Cholesterol Myths Are Kept Alive

IGNORE TOTAL CHOLESTEROL

Total Cholesterol Level is NOT a Great Indicator of Your Heart Disease Risk [Source]

  • unless it is VERY high

But – HDL/TOTAL CHOLESTEROL RATIO >0.25 is good. [Source]

IS HIGH High-density lipoprotein (HDL) GOOD? NOT NECESSARILY

“according to several recent studies, good cholesterol alone has little ability to lower heart-disease risks, and more is not necessarily better.” HDL is not a very good therapeutic target,” says cardiologist Dennis Ko, a senior scientist at the Toronto-based Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences. What’s more, Ko’s own research suggests that above a certain threshold, more HDL could increase health risks.[Source]

IS HIGH LDL (Low-density lipoprotein) BAD? NOT NECESSARILY.

Relying on LDL-C alone can be misleading. [Source]

In fact, “older people with high LDL (low-density lipoprotein) levels, the so-called “bad” cholesterol, lived longer and had less heart disease.” [Source]

LDL type AND number of particles matters

People who have mainly large LDL particles actually have a lower risk of heart disease [Source]

Only the so-called small dense LDL particles can potentially be a problem, because they can squeeze through the lining of the arteries and if they oxidize, otherwise known as turning rancid, they can cause damage and inflammation. [Source]

High numbers of small, dense LDL particles are associated with increased risk for coronary heart disease in prospective epidemiologic studies. Subjects with small, dense particles (phenotype B) are at higher risk than those with larger, more buoyant LDL particles (phenotype A). [Source]

Blood levels of LDL-P and apolipoprotein B are strongly correlated with the risk of coronary heart disease. Both these measurements reflect the actual number of LDL-particles. A high TG/HDL-C ratio likely reflects a large number of LDL-particles

HOW DO YOU REDUCE THE BAD (SMALL) LDL?

American researcher Ronald Krauss found that the most useful risk marker, the best predictor of myocardial infarction among the blood lipids, wasn’t the total amount of cholesterol in the blood, neither was it the ‘bad guy’, LDL cholesterol. It was a special type of LDL particles, the small and dense ones. The most surprising finding was that if somebody ate a large amount of saturated fat, then the number of these small, dense LDL particles decreased. [Source: Uffe Ravnskov, Ignore the Awkward.: How the Cholesterol Myths Are Kept Alive]

Trygliceride/HDL ratio is very important

Many studies have found that the triglyceride/HDL cholesterol ratio (TG/HDL-C ratio) correlates strongly with the incidence and extent of coronary artery disease. This relationship is true both for men and women. One study found that a TG/HDL-C ratio above 1.74 was the most powerful independent predictor of developing coronary artery disease.  TG/HDL-C ratio less than 0.87 is ideal.  [Source]

OTHER THINGS TO DO TO MONITOR HEART RISK

CRP

if you have chronic inflammation is a C-reactive protein (CRP) blood test. CRP level is used as a marker of inflammation in your arteries.

Generally speaking:

— A CRP level under 1 milligrams per liter of blood means you have a low risk for cardiovascular disease

— 1 to 3 milligrams means your risk is intermediate

— More than 3 milligrams is high risk [Source]

Also: homocysteine and apolipoprotein.

Coronary calcium scan 

The coronary calcium scan … looks at plaque in the arteries leading to the heart. Plaque in these arteries is a red flag for a potential heart attack. [Source]

Ultrasound of the carotid artery

This scan “looks at plaque in the main blood vessel leading to the brain. Plaque in the carotid artery is a sign of increased risk for a heart attack and stroke.” [Source]

Cut down infections

There is evidence that infections are associated with heart disease.

KEYWORDS

Does cholesterol matter? Cholesterol and fat myths.

Continue Reading

Root canal experience

I grind a lot at night. After nearly six decades one of my teeth cracked.

Root canal – stage 1 last week. X ray showed everything is OK. The first day or so the tooth felt wobbly, as if it is going to come out. That’s actually a normal thing, I gather. This feeling went away by the third day. Some pain while biting, but all sensitivity due to the crack has gone.

The crown was fitted after around two months of Stage 1, and since then there’s been no issues whatsoever. The tooth can’t be distinguished from other teeth.

Continue Reading