Tag Archives: indicate

Ear wax: Can the colour indicate a problem with your health? When to see medical help

How can you prevent earwax build-up?

The best thing to do is to avoid putting anything in your ears that could push earwax further into your ear canal and lead to impacted wax, infection or even a perforated ear drum, said Harrison.

He continued: “It is extremely important not to put things such as cotton buds, ear candles, match sticks, hair grips and pencils (yes really) in your ears to rid them of any build up.  

“It’s also important to keep your ears clean. You should regularly wipe around the outside of your ear, particularly after showering or washing your face.”

So what should you do if your ears become blocked?

Earwax does usually fall out on its own. If it doesn’t and causes a persistent blockage, it’s best to seek professional advice. 

Author: Katrina Turrill
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High cholesterol symptoms: The ‘minor growths’ on your face that indicate high levels

High cholesterol is when you have too much of a fatty substance called cholesterol in your blood. Cholesterol can build up in your arteries, which, over time, can cause a blockage. Depending on where this happens, it may trigger a stroke or a heart attack. Unfortunately, the only way of accurately identifying high cholesterol is to have a blood test.

However, consistently high cholesterol levels can occasionally spill over to the surface.

This often takes the form of Xanthelasma, a “sharply demarcated yellowish collection of cholesterol underneath the skin, usually on or around the eyelids,” N. Bendsoe and K. Svanberg wrote in their book ‘Lasers for Medical Applications‘.

They continued: “Although not harmful or painful, these minor growths may be disfiguring.”

However, high cholesterol does not usually cause symptoms. You can only reliably find out if you have it from a blood test.

READ MORE: High cholesterol symptoms: Signs of high levels found in your head, hands or feet

“Your GP might suggest having a test if they think your cholesterol level could be high,” explains the NHS.

According to the health body, this may be because of your age, weight or another condition you have (like high blood pressure or diabetes).

Ask your GP surgery for a cholesterol test if:

  • You have not had a test before and you’re over 40, overweight, or have high cholesterol or heart problems run in your family
  • You’re more likely to have high cholesterol.

What happened next

Following a formal diagnosis, you will be advised to overhaul your lifestyle in a bid to bring high cholesterol levels under control.

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There are several foods which are not just part of a healthy diet, they can actively help to lower your cholesterol too.

According to UK cholesterol charity Heart UK, cutting down on saturated fat and replacing some of it with unsaturated fats is a great way to lower your cholesterol.

Saturated fat is the kind of fat found in butter, lard, ghee, fatty meats and cheese.

Foods high in unsaturated fat include:

  • Vegetable oils such as olive, sunflower, corn, rapeseed, nut and seed oils
  • Avocado, nuts and seeds
  • Fat spreads made from vegetable oils, such as sunflower and olive oil
  • Oily fish.

“Oily fish are a good source of healthy unsaturated fats, specifically a type called omega-3 fats,” notes Heart UK.

“Aim to eat two portions of fish per week, at least one of which should be oily.”

Oily fish and other key unsaturated fats can be found in a Mediterranean-style diet.

A Mediterranean diet incorporates the traditional healthy living habits of people from countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea, including France, Greece, Italy and Spain.

In general, it’s high in vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, beans, cereals, grains, fish, and unsaturated fats such as olive oil. It usually includes a low intake of meat and dairy foods.

An active lifestyle can also help lower your cholesterol level.

“Activities can range from walking and cycling to more vigorous exercise, such as running and energetic dancing,” explains the NHS.

“Doing 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity every week can improve your cholesterol levels.

Author: Adam Chapman
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Stomach bloating: Nausea or diarrhoea may indicate a more serious disease – how to know

Causes of SIBO include:

Diets high in sugar, alcohol, and carbohydrates (which feed the bacteria)

Hypothyroidism, which can slow your metabolism and cause a build-up of bacteria in your small intestine

Low stomach acid, which leads to undigested food that feeds the bacteria

Certain medications that disrupt your microbiome, including antibiotics, birth control, acid-blocking drugs, and steroids

Stress, which messes with your digestion and causes dysbiosis

Physical obstructions in the gut that can lead to an abnormal build-up of bacteria, such as diverticula or scarring from surgeries or Crohn’s disease

Dysmotility caused by diabetes, scleroderma, or neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s, ALS, or multiple sclerosis

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed
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High blood pressure: Headaches could indicate a hypertensive crisis – what to do?

High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is famously branded the “silent killer” because it is usually symptomless. If the force of blood pushing against the walls of your blood vessels increases severely, you may experience marked changes, however. This is called a hypertensive crisis.

Health platform Ada explains: “Sometimes, people with essential hypertension may experience headaches, dizziness and blurred vision, but these symptoms are unlikely to occur until blood pressure reaches a very high level.”

Essential hypertension is a type of high blood pressure that has no clearly identifiable cause.

According to Ada, some people also report that their heartbeat seems louder than usual and feels as if it is inside the ear.

“This may be more prominent the higher the blood pressure is,” explains the health platform.

According to a paper in the Iranian Journal of Neurology, headaches due to high blood pressure typically cause pain on both sides of the head.

The headache pain tends to pulsate and often gets worse after physical activity.

The authors of the study said high blood pressure can cause headaches because it affects the blood-brain barrier.

Hypertension can result in excess pressure on the brain, which can cause blood to leak from the blood vessels in the organ, said Medical News Today.

The site continued: “This causes edema, or swelling, which is problematic because the brain sits within the skull and has no space to expand.

“The swelling places further pressure on the brain and causes symptoms that include a headache, dizziness, nausea, confusion, weakness, seizures, and blurred vision.

“If a person receives treatment to lower their blood pressure, their symptoms will usually improve within an hour.”

In one study the prevalence of a hypertensive emergency was evaluated in an emergency department during 12 months of observation.

The most frequent signs observed were headache, epistaxis (nosebleeds), faintness, and psychomotor agitation.

Psychomotor refers to a wide range of actions involving physical movement related to conscious cognitive processing.

In most cases, however, high blood pressure rarely produces noticeable symptoms.

“So, the only way to find out if you have it been to get your blood pressure checked,” explains the NHS.

“If you experience a severe increase in your blood pressure, seek immediate medical attention,” advises Mayo Clinic.

According to the health body, treatment for hypertensive crisis may include hospitalisation for treatment with oral or intravenous medications.

The only way to determine your blood pressure reading is to get a blood pressure test.

UK public health advice recommends that all adults over 40 have their blood pressure checked at least every five years.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed
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Fatty liver disease symptoms: Four signs on the hand can indicate your organ is damaged

The liver has the incredible ability to regenerate itself, yet if scarring takes place, that part of the liver can’t be restored. Do you need to start taking better care of your health? Take a look at your hands, pay attention to the colour of the skin and nails, the shape of your fingers, and if they shake. The British Liver Trust pointed out that in the earlier stages of fatty liver disease, the palms become red and blotchy.

Pamela Healy, the CEO of the British Liver Trust, said: “One in three of us are at risk of getting liver disease.

“It is a silent killer and people often don’t realise they have a problem until it is too late.”

If you’re experiencing any symptoms of fatty liver disease, do speak to your doctor.

Do bear in mind that most doctors now offer telephone and video consultations due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“A healthy liver should contain little or no fat,” said the British Liver Trust.

You can help to maintain a healthy weight by eating a healthy, balanced diet and being more physically active.

Leading a healthier lifestyle will reward you with so many health benefits later on in life.

In order to follow the best type of diet, the British Liver Trust recommends the Mediterranean diet.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed
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Cancer symptoms: Seven warning signs in your poo that indicate cancer

Cancer is a serious condition whereby cells in a specific part of the body grow and reproduce uncontrollably. The cancerous cells can invade and destroy surrounding healthy tissue, including organs. When this destructive process takes place in the top part of your tummy, it is known as pancreatic cancer.

Like all cancers, it is imperative to respond to the warning signs of pancreatic cancer as soon as they appear to improve treatment outcomes.

Unfortunately, pancreatic cancer may not have any symptoms, or they might be hard to spot, notes the NHS.

However, if symptoms do surface, they may take the form of changes to your poo.

According to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network (PCAN), diarrhoea that has the following consistency signal pancreatic cancer:

  • Loose
  • Watery
  • Oily
  • Foul-smelling.

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These changes can be caused by insufficient amounts of pancreatic enzymes in the intestines, explains PCAN.

“This leads to malabsorption as undigested food passes quickly through the digestive tract,” says the health body.

“If the digestive system works too slowly, it can cause stools to become dry, hard and difficult to pass.”

General symptoms include:

  • The whites of your eyes or your skin turn yellow (jaundice), you may also have itchy skin, darker pee and paler poo than usual
  • Loss of appetite or losing weight without trying to
  • Feeling tired or having no energy
  • A high temperature, or feeling hot or shivery.

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How to respond

According to the NHS, you should see a GP if you have:

  • Lost a noticeable amount of weight over the last six to 12 months without trying
  • other symptoms of pancreatic cancer that get worse or do not get better after two weeks
  • A condition that causes symptoms with your digestion that are not getting better after two weeks of using your usual treatments.

“Many of these symptoms are very common and can be caused by many different conditions,” notes the health body.

But it’s important to get them checked by a GP.

“This is because if they’re caused by cancer, finding it early makes it more treatable,” explains the NHS.

“Almost half of all new cases are diagnosed in people aged 75 and over,” reports Cancer Research UK.

According to the charity, around 20 out of 100 cases of pancreatic cancer in the UK (around 20 percent) are caused by smoking.

“Cigarettes, cigars, pipes and chewing tobacco all increase pancreatic cancer risk,” it warns.

Other risk factors include:

  • Being overweight or obese
  • Family cancer syndromes and genetic factors
  • Other medical conditions.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed
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Fatty liver disease: Dandruff could indicate your liver is failing increasing your risk

The liver is a reddish-brown, cone-shaped organ found in the upper right portion of your abdominal cavity. A healthy liver typically weighs around three pounds and is capable of holding approximately 13 percent of the body’s blood supply at different times. When the liver is failing, fatty liver disease may ensue which is a result of poor lifestyle choices including alcohol abuse. A sign your liver is deteriorating may include experiencing dandruff.

White, scaly plaques on your scalp otherwise referred to as dandruff could indicate liver problems.

In Chinese medicine, the most common cause of dandruff is “liver blood deficiency”, said acupuncturist Angela Hicks.

She added: “Blood, amongst other things, moistens the body, so ‘blood deficiency’ doesn’t mean you are anaemic but that your blood isn’t moistening your scalp sufficiently (the blood deficiency also causes psoriasis).”

Other health conditions which cause dandruff as a symptom include:

  • Sjogren’s Syndrome
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Psoriasis
  • EFA Need
  • Liver Congestion
  • Vitamin B6 deficiency

In most cases, fatty liver disease doesn’t cause any serious problems or prevent your liver from functioning normally, said the Cleveland Clinic.

The health site continued: “But for seven percent to 30 percent of people with the condition, fatty liver disease gets worse over time.”

It progresses through three stages:

Your liver becomes inflamed (swollen), which damages its tissue. This stage is called steatohepatitis.

Scar tissue forms where your liver is damaged. This process is called fibrosis.

Extensive scar tissue replaces healthy tissue. At this point, you have cirrhosis of the liver.


Fatty liver develops when your body produces too much fat or doesn’t metabolise fat efficiently enough.

The excess fat is stored in liver cells, where it accumulates and causes fatty liver disease.

This build-up of fat can be caused by a variety of things.

For example, drinking too much alcohol can cause alcoholic fatty liver disease. This is the first stage of alcohol-related liver disease.

In people who don’t drink a lot of alcohol, the cause of fatty liver disease is less clear.

Am I at risk?

Experts don’t know exactly why some people accumulate fat in the liver while others do not.

“Similarly, there is limited understanding of why some fatty livers develop inflammation that progresses to cirrhosis,” explains the Mayo Clinic.

NAFLD has been linked to a range of chronic disease markers, however.

These include:

Overweight or obesity

Insulin resistance, in which your cells don’t take up sugar in response to the hormone insulin

High blood sugar (hyperglycaemia), indicating prediabetes or type 2 diabetes

High levels of fats, particularly triglycerides, in the blood.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed
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Fatty liver disease symptoms: The texture of your poo can indicate if your organ is damage

Fatty liver disease is strongly associated with obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol. If you have one (or more) of these health conditions, how can you know if your organ is damaged? Scarring of the liver can eventually lead to liver failure, which requires an organ transplant, so it’s very important to prevent it from getting to that stage. A tar-like texture to your poo can be an indication of cirrhosis, Medical News Today confirmed.

“Consume both proteins and carbohydrates, but limit fats and sugars,” advised Medical News Today.

Implementing healthy eating habits as soon as possible can help prevent (further) scarring of the liver.

Once bits of the liver become scarred, the organ is unable to heal those specific parts.

However, the organ has an amazing ability to heal itself by reducing inflammation.

Waist measurements

BMI is a useful indication as to whether a person is at a healthy weight.

A more telling sign of obesity is using a tape measure to measure the waistline.

Women who have a waistline of 80cm or more “are more likely to develop obesity-related health problems”, including fatty liver disease.

For men, their risk of health complications increases if they have a waist circumference of 94cm or more.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed
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Cancer symptoms: Six warning signs on your feet that may indicate a growing skin tumour

“Over recent years, skin cancer has become much more common in the UK,” warned the NHS.

Compared to other types of cancer, melanoma skin cancer is also commonly found in people under the age of 50.

In fact, more than one in four skin cancer cases are diagnosed in younger people.

The deadly disease kills around 2,300 people each year in the UK.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed
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Diabetes type 2 symptoms: Five IBS-like symptoms that can indicate you have the condition

Speaking to Express.co.uk, nutritionist Claudia le Feuvre, outlined the symptoms that closely resemble irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

IBS is a common condition that affects the digestive system. It causes symptoms like stomach cramps, bloating, diarrhoea and constipation.

“Type 2 diabetes can affect the structure and function of the colon promoting commonly encountered lower gastrointestinal symptoms,” explains le Feuvre.

This can result in IBS-like symptoms, such as constipation, diarrhoea, abdominal distention, bloating, and abdominal pain, she warned.

READ MORE: Diabetes type 2 symptoms: The smell in your breath that could be life-threatening

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