Chronic Illness

Written by PathologyPrevention
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   Now, the most common chronic illness for aging adults is arthritis. Many forms of arthritis can be prevented and treated by means outside of medication. Does this mean you never take medication for arthritis? No, it does not. There are many treatments that are complementary to medication. But Health Guardians need to do more to keep arthritis from getting to a point where medication is the only treatment. How? One: keep joints moving. Two: keep excess body weight off joints. Three: start a simple strength training routine. These three decisions will go a long way toward knocking arthritis off the top of the chronic illnesses chart. Determination is strong medicine. Action is strong medicine. A support system is strong medicine. The Health Guardian uses about everything from diet, to exercise, to creating a family safety net, to help them in the fight against arthritis and other conditions.

   The biggest concern for seniors today is a big C, but not the big C. It's cardiovascular disease, also known as CVD. That's the number-one killer for seniors 65-plus. So, does that mean cardiovascular disease is a death sentence and there's little or nothing we can do about it? Heck no! Cardio comes from the Greek kardia, which means heart, vascular is related to blood vessels, arteries, and veins. So a disease affecting the heart and blood vessels is known as cardiovascular disease. Many times, CVD is caused by hypertension, or high blood pressure. CVD is also associated with atherosclerosis, a condition in which fatty material, called plaque, collects along the walls of arteries. This fatty material will thicken, then harden, forming calcium deposits. This buildup narrows the arteries, making it harder for blood to flow through them. In combination with other factors, it can eventually block arteries, causing a blood clot that can lead to heart attack or stroke. Fatty, processed foods are typically the culprit in CVD. There are simple things you can do to significantly reduce your chances of CVD – including mastering an understanding of food labels and identifying bad fats – so you can keep your cardiovascular system running freely.

   Half of men and one-third of women will develop cancer in their lifetime. Cancer is a general name given to over 100 diseases in which cells grow out of and invade other tissue. Left untreated, this abnormal growth can cause serious illness and even death. Your risk of developing most types of cancer can be significantly reduced by changes in your lifestyle. Number one: if you smoke or use tobacco, quit. Number two: when you’re in the sun, protect your skin (limited exposure is good because you need vitamin D). Number three: get physically active. And number four: eat better, because a healthy diet reduces your chances of cancer. Those are simple, common sense things that you can do on your own behalf.

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