About time: Medical research that could save your life (and mine)

The first time a gynecologist told me he suspected I had endometriosis, I felt relieved to hear some tangible name, some possible explanation for the really bad period and painful sex issues I was experiencing as a young and healthy woman. What I wasn’t prepared for was the next part of his talk with me, about how there wasn’t enough known about how and why and when endometriosis works, how to resolve it and all those bullet points you expect to read in the brochure you really do want to read (for once).

I became even more perplexed in the years that followed when I talked about endo and found out how many women I know were (rather silently) suffering from it as well. Sure, there were organizations and clinical trials and some women get plenty of pain management from taking The Pill or with other alternative treatments. But still, I was startled every time I heard a woman say she was just putting up with the pain and period horrors because her doctors didn’t really know what else to tell her to do.

I’ve been lucky to have a vital life around what seems to be endometriosis in my own body, but there are scores and scores of uncounted women who may or do have chronic, serious and critical illnesses that seem to be fairly common (or just common enough) without having the medications, research, treatments or information their doctors need to help them seek a cure or even some relief.

A big part of the problem with diagnosing and treating women’s health concerns stems back to the labs. And this is way more than startling. It is an outrage: It is 2008 and women have been discluded from the medical research that could save our lives or even simply give us answers about how certain diseases impact us. Not men, not even male animals. Us.

Hospitals, foundations and dedicated doctors are now seeking to turn the lab tables on this medical misogyny by committing to women-centered health research. For that, I am grateful.

This is critical because men and women don’t always react to diseases or medications in the same way. For example, several different studies showed that women are prone to have a much lower quality of life than men following a stroke. We also have a higher risk of developing sleep disorders, arthritis, depression, anxiety, multiple sclerosis, lupus, gallstones, irritable bowel syndrome and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease than men. As research on cardiovascular disease has become gender-specific, researchers have found that women’s symptoms are much wider than men’s and simultaneously treated less aggressively and detected less often.

As this “personalization of medicine” moves up in priority, here’s hoping that it moves from the labs and medical journals and into the doctor’s offices swiftly. Maybe then, all of us will have some more pain relief, a few more answers, a little more information or even the cure we are seeking on our journey to good health.

What are Tonsil Stones and their Symptoms?

The tonsils are the small patches of glandular tissues in the back of the mouth meant for preventing the bacterial intake. They serve as the immunity organs and play a very important role. But sometimes, the bacteria and other food particles get trapped in the back of the throats, resulting in the tonsil stones or can be called as Tonsilloliths. These stones look like the small white bags of the mucous substance which become trapped and become painful too at times. These can be seen even from outside, and many people even the dentists mix them up with food particles. These white stones are not at all a good sign as they can cause a lot of other problems in the mouth. These do not have any physical harm and hence not should be worried about.

These are a result of some inflammations which make the food debris around in the mouth. These stones can be seen either around the tonsils or inside them. The swelling of the tonsils is not only because of the infections but also because of those stones. The better it is to get rid of them as soon as possible. These can cause bad breath and bad throat sourness. the bad breath is not acceptable anywhere in the society and the stones push down the effect of mouth washes or mouth smell enhancers. Nothing works for stopping the bad smell when the issue is related to the tonsilloliths. The food particles and bacteria that are trapped, give rise to sulfur compounds. These are responsible for such a bad condition. When a tonsil stone is burst open or tear apart, the smell is horrible and can lead to nausea or vomiting.

The symptoms of tonsil stones include bad breath regardless of the other precautions taken to stop this. The other symptoms include the sore throat which keeps on hurting every single moment and feels like having rashes all inside the throat. This makes inhaling very difficult and unnecessary coughing occurs. Moreover, the swallowing is not easy talk either. The eating becomes a huge mess and feels like killing the food inside body not eating. The only solution then is to have liquid injected inside. The intake of fluids and healthy juices is used as an alternative to the food. Sometimes, the tonsil swells because of the stones inside it. The swollen tonsil is not encouraged by any doctor and hence quick remedies should be taken. The swollen tonsils make it very painful for the victim to pass the time and food. The breathing is at stake with them and they also become prominent from outside of the mouth. The neck hurts and temperature quite severe can be a consequence. The white solid material in the back of the throat if seen or observed, signify that tonsil stones are taking birth in the mouth.

All these symptoms show what are tonsilloliths and if they exist or no. It is better to get them removed or finished in any possible way as these are not good for keeping or storing inside. Although there physical harm is nothing, still it is better to stop them.

Question on lifting to jump higher

How important is lifting weights (especially legs) during the season and in the off season?  I have been lifting in the off season for a couple of years now.  I do it mainly because of guilt.  I feel I need to be doing something to make me a better player.   I can’t say that lifting weights has made me a better player i.e. jumping higher, moving faster.  Do you think I need to continue to lift during the season.  Any advice would be appreciated.

I highly suggest weight training during both the off-season and in-season.  Proper training will increase work tolerance, lactate tolerance, inter and intra-muscular coordination, explosiveness, speed, and just about any other biomotor ability such as increase your vertical jump.  If you don’t feel that you have improved from the work you have done, then I suggest that you find a good strength coach to assist you.  In today’s game, you will be left in the dust if you don’t continue to improve your strength in the off-season.  I frequently come across pro players that have extremely poor strength training programs and it makes me wonder how they made it to the level they are at.  Some of them could be so much better if they found the right strength coach that could guide them in the right direction.  Most just continue to perform garbage bodybuilding routines that don’t transfer to the game.  Lifting during the season is a tricky thing.  I only give exercises that work the weaknesses to maintain a decent level of structural integrity.  Exercises that work the hamstrings, external shoulder rotator cuff, VMO, and lower abs are the priority during the season.  Then depending on how much court training and traveling the athlete has to do, I might have them do other various exercises.

Wellness Incentives Increase Employee Participation

Wellness incentives are important to discuss because there is such a wide variety of things available to reward employees for their behavior changes.  Unfortunately it seems that worksite health promotion programs are the most effective when employees are provided with wellness incentives.

wellness incentives

Better health and improved quality of life just doesn’t seem to be enough for most to participate in any other “extra” activities while at work. Everyone leads a busy life with hectic schedules and tremendous workloads.

Adding anything else can be challenging even though we know that by participating in a wellness program we can improve our health and quality of life. This can get quite frustrating for those who are responsible for developing a wellness program. Trust me I know as I have been there.

Heck—even businesses need incentives to get involved in worksite health promotion.

Before you initiate your wellness incentive plan, understand employee reward rules set forth by the Department of Labor and the U.S. Treasury to help you meet HIPAA guidelines.

Worksite wellness programs that include employee participation incentives are far more productive programs. Employers already “dangling the carrot” and providing employee rewards/incentives for their wellness efforts are far ahead in the race in managing health care costs.
What Incentives Will Motivate Employees?

Determining what motivates your employees will be the first step in knowing which wellness incentives you should incorporate into your wellness program. Wellness program incentives that work for ABC company down the street will most certainly not always work for Company XYZ. Your budget will also play an influential part in the decision.

Employee interest surveys are a great way to collect data on what employees would like to receive. An employee interest survey asks employees questions about what programs they are willing and interested in attending as well as what incentives would motivate behavior change.

Depending on the health risk appraisal you select, some HRA’s also include questions that analyze employee interests, needs, and wants which can be useful in planning for your incentive program.
When Is The Best Time to Include Incentives?

When to offer incentives and what incentives are the most common are two complex questions. Anytime employees are introduced to a new program, benefit, or service they are immediately intrigued and interested. In today’s society, health and wellness has become a hot topic of conversation and more popular than it ever has been. More people are starting to take action to improve their health through behavior change.

When worksite wellness programs are introduced to employees excitement is usually high. As time goes on, the excitement can deteriorate if stronger, more influential incentives are not incorporated into the overall plan.

Most often, employers will offer incentives like t-shirts, raffle prizes, and gift certificates for completing a health risk appraisals, attending a health fair, or attending an educational presentation. These are great employee rewards for one time activities but are certainly not enough to encourage long term behaviors change. Would you quit smoking or reduce your blood pressure for a water bottle?

For attendance required activities (i.e. luncheon presentations, walking events, or nutrition courses) I would recommend offering a t-shirt or gift certificate to reward employees. However, these wellness incentives should not be the primary form of employee recognition in your wellness program.

Employers today are getting more serious about the types of wellness incentives employees are offered for not only participation but for making changes in their health. The days of a pat on the back and a “Good Job” are over because unfortunately, they DO not and WILL not initiate change.

Clean Eating – Produce Information

A key to clean eating is try to eat at least 10 servings of produce a day. If you do this then you will be able to avoid eating processed foods and your energy levels will skyrocket. It is sometimes a challenge to get in 10 servings but you can get at least three servings with a green smoothie.  If you are eating 5 to 6 meals per day then you should come close to the 10 servings daily. So what is a serving size? In general –

One Serving of Fruits:

1 medium to large size fruit
1/2 cup small fruits like berries, grapes, etc.
1 cup chopped fruits like melons, grapefruit, etc.
1/4 cup dried fruit (go for unsweetened)

One Serving of Vegetables:

1 cup cooked or raw veggies
2 cups leafy greens
1/2 cup beans/legumes

Produce is very filling and low in calories.  Meal planning is also important in getting in your 10 servings per day.  When you plan your meals you are better able to avoid the stuff you don’t need like processed foods which contain unnecessary chemicals and additives.  For more information about your food choices please visit

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