Does Metabolism Slow Down After Pregnancy? – Get the Details!

Does your metabolism slow down after pregnancy? Most women know that their body experience hormonal surges that affect the body’s processes, including nutrient delivery, storage of fat, and energy processing. Typically, the metabolism also increases which is why most pregnant women always feel hungry almost all of the time.

After giving birth, these hormones fall drastically and would continue to do so in 4 to 5 months after childbirth. Different women have various reactions to the decline of hormone. Some enter a state of depression or postnatal depression while some adapt to their hormonal changes easily. Mood swings are linked to the decline of thyroid hormones, which also regulate the body’s metabolism.

Reduced thyroid hormones affect how the body regulates energy from food. As it takes several months before the normal production of hormone returns, burning of calories while at rest will most probably slow down during this time. Symptoms of depression, onset by the decreased thyroid hormones, also have a huge effect on weight gain. Your body is also drained of stored nutrients after childbirth, which slows down the metabolism and prevents mothers from losing weight.

Losing weight after pregnancy

With hormonal changes, lost nutrients, and other physical changes that occur after pregnancy, it is not recommended to try to shed pounds immediately after pregnancy. At least not in the way to go on some extreme diet! The most important thing is to get sufficient nutrition and gain more healthy calories needed for breastfeeding. On a lighter note, breastfeeding can help you lose a little weight. You can start with light exercise and increase it as you go further. Take out the junk food out of your snacking and all these little steps will help you lose the weight. However, as mentioned above, women respond to changes differently so be observant of your body’s reaction to such changes.

If you do not want to gain more pounds, it is best to consult a dietician for a weight loss program after childbirth. Reduce intake of empty calories but do not cut off healthy calories as it would only slow down your metabolism more. As much as possible, increase your daily activity. Start by taking your baby for morning walks, dancing him carefully to music, or stroll him or her to the park. You may always be worried and ask does your metabolism slow down after pregnancy. Whether it does or not, the main concern is to keep you and your baby healthy before, during, and after childbirth.

5 Problems For Children in Africa

I will simply provide the list below and provide my own brief review for each point I make. If you take some time to read the article right to the end, you will gain more valuable insights in to this serious subject.

Most of them cannot afford to go to school or are forced drop out

A good education is important to improve the lives of African children. Children in Africa lack financial resources to be able to go to school. A large portion of the African population has people who live below the poverty line, and thus many families cannot afford to take their children to school because it is expensive. For example 69% of the people in Swaziland live with just about $3 per month. This has caused under privileged children not to have formal education.

Rape is another problem that children are faced with in the African continent

Sexual violence is one of the largest crimes against children, which threaten lives of so many of them. Violence, domestic abuse and discrimination are some of the painful things children have to go through everyday of their lives.

African countries have poor health care facilities, which have resulted in an increase in health problems for children

The lack of health care facilities has increased the number of deaths of children. Children suffer from water-borne infection from the lack of clean drinking water. Children also get health problem through mother to infant, where mothers abuse alcohol and drugs creating abnormalities and growth disorder to infants.

Another problem faced by children is starvation, which is caused by poverty where there is lack of financial resources to buy food

Starvation has resulted in malnutrition and underweight children. Most African countries rely on food donations in order to feed the hungry children; also there are orphanages where orphans are taken care of and given the necessary basic needs.

A large number of children in Africa are infected and or affected by the HIV/AIDS pandemic

This has increased the number of orphans and vulnerable children and causing a large number of the young ones to be without parents or a guardian. The pandemic has resulted to a high number of child-headed households. Furthermore, because these kids are not adequately taught, they have a high chance of contracting the HIV virus while taking care of their sick parents or by being engaged in “sex games”.

Quick and Easy Recipes For Healthy Pug Food

Cooking healthy for your pug doesn’t have to be a complicated task. The key is to keep the preparation quick and simple. The easier you make things for yourself, the more likely you’ll be able to manage cooking healthy for your pug.

Here are some nutritious and easy to prepare recipes that you can regularly whip up for your lovely pet.

Healthy No Fuss Sweet Potato Dog Chew

Sweet potatoes can be a healthy alternative to rawhide dog chew. It’s rich in complex carbohydrates and fiber. It has twice the recommended daily allowance of vitamin A, and 42 percent of the recommended vitamin C intake, plus four times the RDA for beta-carotene. When eaten with skin, sweet potatoes actually have more fiber than oatmeal.

Ingredients

1 Large Sweet Potato cut into 1/3″ or 1/4″ slices.

Directions

Bake the sliced pieces at 250 degrees for 3 hrs, turn it half way through, and then allow it to cool completely before feeding it to your pug.

Brown Rice with Vegetables and Meat

Removing the hull of the rice kernel produces brown rice, which is as an excellent source of the minerals selenium and magnesium. When completely milled and polished, brown rice is converted into white rice, and during this process about 80% of its vitamins and minerals are eliminated. This includes vitamins B3, B1 & B6, manganese, phosphorus, iron, and most of the dietary fiber and essential fatty acids.

Brown rice is indeed a healthy carbohydrate and here’s a recipe you can easily prepare for your pug.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • ½ pound ground turkey
  • 8 ounce package frozen broccoli and carrots

Directions

Place ground turkey, frozen vegetables, brown rice and chicken broth into a large saucepan. Bring the mixture into a boil, while stirring constantly. Cook until the rice is tender and all if not most of the liquid has been absorbed. This should take about 30 minutes.

Cool completely before serving to your pug.

3-Steps Doggy Burger

Ingredients

  • ½ pound hamburger meat
  • 1 jar baby food green beans
  • 1 jar baby food carrots
  • 2 Tbsp cottage cheese

Directions

  1. Stir-fry the hamburger meat with canola oil
  2. Combine with other ingredients
  3. Cool and serve.

How to Determine Your Overall Fitness Level

What constitutes fitness? How do you know if you are physically fit or not? Just like any other physical or physiological characteristics like height or weight, fitness is a relative measurement. We can safely assume that a weekend runner is more fit than a habitual couch potato, and in turn, is less fit compared to a marathon runner. Experts use several tests to judge a person’s level of fitness. Here are some of them:

1. Resting heart rate – Your resting heart rate or pulse is the number of times your heart beats in a minute. It indicates how hard your heart needs to work in order to pump your blood around your body. A normal resting rate should be between 60 to 90 beats per minute. Well-trained athletes fall into the low-end of this normal range because their hearts have become very efficient pumping machines.

Heart rate can be affected by many factors like medicines, stress, physical activity, or stimulants like coffee. The best way to get your resting heart rate is to measure it first thing in the morning for three consecutive days.

2. Heart rate after exercise or physical activity – Your heart rate naturally goes up during exercise or physical exertion. Try to exercise for 15 minutes on a stationary bike or treadmill and then get your pulse rate. This number, just like the resting heart rate, should go down after sometime of getting into a regular aerobic exercise program.

3. Blood pressure – Blood pressure is a measure of how hard the heart has to beat in order to push your blood through your blood vessels. It also indicates how open your blood vessels are. The baseline normal blood pressure reading is 120/80 although there is a growing consensus to define it as 115/75. Blood pressure varies throughout during the day depending on several factors like mental state and physical activity. If it measures consistently higher than 140/90 throughout the day, for several days, you are considered hypertensive and should see a doctor for prescription medicines to lower it.

A regular exercise program helps to normalize your blood pressure by helping your blood vessels to relax. Again if you’re hypertensive, be sure to consult your doctor about the types of exercise routines that are appropriate for you. He or she may forbid you to do weight training exercises which can cause a rapid rise in blood pressure.

4. Percentage of body fat – In general, the more body fat you have, the more prone you are to developing health problems like heart disease, hypertension, and even some types of cancer. However, this must be considered in conjunction with other factors like diet and exercise habits. Also, where your fat is distributed may be more important; studies show that abdominal fat, the kind that deposits itself around your waist (and in your abdomen), is more associated with heart disease risks than fat that is deposited around your thighs.

This is not to say body fat is bad; it is possible to be too thin. For women, for example, having too little body fat (less than 16%) may lead to problems like bone loss and irregular menstrual periods.

How to measure your body fat? One way is the so-called skinfold caliper test where the tester pinches your skin as if to pull away your fat from your muscles and bones. It is done on several different points like your upper arms, your abdomen, or the back of your shoulder. Another way is simpler and is called the Body Mass Index (BMI) measurement. It is calculated by dividing your weight (in kg) by the square of your height (in meters). If using pounds and inches, divide your weight (in pounds) by the square of your height (in inches) and multiply by 703. A BMI value of 18.5 to 25 is considered optimal. Higher than 25 is considered overweight, and lower than 18.5 is considered underweight.

5. Strength – Certain exercises such as sit-ups, leg extensions, and push-ups indicate the strength of your upper body, lower body, and abdominal muscles. If you can barely do a few sit-ups or push-ups, you may have been out of shape for some time. You may want to consider weightlifting to improve your strength.

6. Flexibility – This is a little bit overlooked compared to strength, but flexibility or the ability to bend your body and joints to full range, is a good measure of your overall fitness. You lose flexibility as you age, and you may find that you are less able to do some postures or bending motions that you could easily do when you were younger. Doing stretching exercises is the best way to improve your flexibility.

All these factors must be considered to determine your overall fitness level. Tests can be done by a physician, a personal trainer, or a fitness professional. By measuring these indicators, you can customize your exercise program and concentrate where it is more needed, say cardiovascular training, weight training, or flexibility exercises.

How Can Smoking Destroy Your Lungs? The 3 Main Ways Smoking Damages the Lungs

It is well known that smoking is dangerous in many different ways. Smoking over a period of time leads to many different health problems. Smoking is particularly damaging to the heart and lungs. Smoking can lead to a number of lung diseases or disorders including COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder), lung cancer, Emphysema, and shortness of breath.  But exactly how can smoking destroy your lungs. Let’s look at the process.

The Cilia

As a smoker inhales smoke into their lungs it first passes through the esophagus and windpipe. It passes through the upper airways and over the cilia. Cilia are tiny hairs that line the upper airway. They are responsible for protecting the lungs from infection by moving mucus out of the lungs. The continuous passing of smoke over the cilia eventually damages them to the point that they can no longer move. Once the cilia can no longer move then mucus mixed with damaging toxins gets clogged in the lungs. This can increase the smoker’s chances of getting lung cancer or COPD.

The Alveoli

As smoke continues its journey through the lungs it is divided between the left and right lung and continues to be divided over and over into the smallest passages of the lungs known as the alveoli. The alveoli are the final branching of the respiratory system. The alveoli are the air sacs that transport oxygen into your blood and can be compared to tiny balloons. Over time smoking causes the alveoli to become less elastic. As the alveoli lose their elasticity it makes it more difficult for them to absorb oxygen and remove carbon dioxide from the lungs. This is what causes shortness of breath in smokers.

Lung Elasticity

Smoking can also destroy the elastic recoil of your lungs causing the smoker to have difficulty breathing out. This difficulty in breathing out leads to an excess of carbon dioxide in the lungs eventually filling the lungs with carbon dioxide. This destruction of the elastic recoil of the lungs leads to emphysema.

Can the Damage Be Repaired?

We reviewed the 3 main ways of how can smoking destroy your lungs. The good news is that if a smoker can quit smoking before permanent damage is done then the lungs have the ability to repair themselves. But, the smoker must stop before the damage becomes permanent so the sooner the smoker quits the better. It is never too late to quit smoking and the damage it causes to the lungs.

The Importance of Mental Health

What is mental health?

Though no concise definition exists, mental health is basically your attitude and approach to life. Psychological, environmental, genetic, or physiological factors have a profound effect on overall mental development.

What is mental illness?

Mental illness impairs your ability to perform routine tasks, foster healthy relationships, or cope with anger or stress. It may be classified on the basis of extreme mood swings, irrational or destructive thought patterns, and behavioral problems.

How important is mental health?

Your mental health has a huge impact on every aspect of your life.

o Self-image

Good mental health means appreciating your achievements and accepting your shortcomings. A mental illness can cause an inferiority complex, a negative body image, and intense feelings of self-hate, anger, disgust, and uselessness, which could mutate into extreme depression, psycho-social disorders, or eating disorders.

o Education

Students with mental problems socially isolate themselves, and develop anxiety disorders and concentration problems. Good mental health ensures an all-round educational experience that enhances social and intellectual skills that lead to self-confidence and better grades.

o Relationships

Mental health largely contributes to the functioning of human relationships. Mental illness can hamper even basic interactions with family, friends, and colleagues. Most people suffering from mental illness find it difficult to nurture relationships, have problems with commitment or intimacy, and frequently encounter sexual health issues.

o Sleep

An inability to handle stress or anxiety can cause insomnia. Even if you mange to fall asleep, you may wake up a dozen times during the night with thoughts of what went wrong the day before or how bad tomorrow is going to be. You may develop severe sleeping disorders which leave you exhausted and less productive.

o Eating

People with mental disorders are more prone to indulging in comfort eating or emotional binges. Finding comfort in food is something we all do from time to time. But with a mental illness, it becomes difficult to control yourself. Overeating can lead to obesity, which puts you at a risk for heart disease and diabetes, in addition to creating an unhealthy body-image.

o Physical health

Your mental state directly affects your body. For example, stress can lead to hypertension or stomach ulcers. People who are mentally healthy are at a lower risk for many health complications.

So make a conscious effort to improve and maintain your mental health.

Psychiatry – The Nightmare of the People

Abstract:

In this paper I want to review the investigations from the Citizens Committee for Human Rights in Mental Health. It is this organisation in the United States and other countries that have consistently brought the dangers of psychiatry to the attention of the general public who by and large are the victims of a marriage between pharmaceutical companies and their paid distributors of lethal drugs, psychiatrists. This alliance has been based on the greed for money, profits and kudos all in the name of a science that as one leading authority called – “hokum”

Introduction: A Short History

The history of psychiatry is strewn with the deaths; torture and misadventure that would make any sane person wonder why it has been allowed to continue to practice this black art for so long. Of course the anti-psychiatry movement has been around for almost as long as the profession itself. How did this all begin? You have to go back to the days of the asylums that grew up in the early part of the 1800’s particularly in England and the USA. These places were no more than prisons for the mad, those souls that could not function within the societies norms that dictated how one should act and behave. The head of the asylums was a medical doctor, the first psychiatrist. This man caged the mentally ill in cells, with no heating, little food but rotten scraps and in order to cure them of their madness the inmates were tortured by flogging, burning, immersion in water and many other inhumane acts called treatment. The down fall of the asylums started in England with the York Retreat a Quaker run institute for the mentally ill run on very different lines from the asylums that were government institutions. In the York retreat the inmates were given jobs to perform, were helped by keeping simple rules and rewarded for following them.

They received humane treatment that would lead them to God and sanity. While the York retreat had some success it was still based on control of the mad. Later as the years went by and the 19th century ended the rise of the huge mental hospitals arrived. Psychiatry had new weapons to defeat the mentally ill, this time with brain surgery called lobotomies, hydro-treatment, fire hoses to spray patients with forced jets of water, wet blanket wrapping, where patients would be bound in wet sheets on a bed unable to move for hours, insulin injections, to cause artificial brain seizures and of course electric convulsive therapy – shocking patients with bolts of electricity in order to numb the brain into not remembering why they had problems in the first place. As the 21st century arrived the cost of these hospitals became so burdensome to governments they closed them down and in their stead introduced “care in the community” which ironically did not care at all and most mental health patients became homeless and the new beggars in our streets. It was not until the early 1900’s that finally Freud introduced his “talking cure” a humane way to try and understand the plight of the mentally disturbed and a way of giving them insight and a possible cure. Of course you had to have money for this treatment much as you do today.

Psychoanalysis is for those who can pay the price. As the century blossomed so did Freud’s theory which was to become many types of therapy from behaviourism, cognitive, transactional and many more variegation of his original idea. In fact without Freud there would be no modern psychology as we know it. From about 1960 a new ear for psychiatry emerged. All those barbaric treatments that never worked were about to be replaced, not by another type of institutions but by a chemical straightjacket that came from the pharmaceutical industry. Now drugs were the new form of treatment, suddenly the lowly carer of the insane, and the psychiatrist could become a real doctor and prescribe psychopharmecutical drugs to all. So an era of drug pushing began, where new mental disorders were manufactured in order to sell more drugs. Early in the century Krapelin invented a small book called the DSM (diagnostic statistical manual of mental illness) in this book he gave lists of mental symptoms that if added up in one person lead to a label for their problem, such as depression, anxiety, mania, hysteria, homosexuality, immoral behaviour and much more. As the years went by the profession of psychiatry kept adding to this book and inventing new labels in order to match a drug to manage it.

Today we have the DSM IV version with the next one almost completed as number V. Over the years it has discovered all sorts of new ways to classify human emotions as being mentally ill. Bipolar disorders, ADHD in children, PTSD for soldiers (shell shock of WW1) and many others. While these labels may have some usefulness and have been recognised as genuine problems for a few people, now of course according to psychiatry we are all mentally ill, if not at this moment but in our lifetime. So they divide populations into existing clients of drugs and potential clients of drugs. Today mental health is not a profession, not even a scientific medical branch but simply a marketing arm of the pharmaceutical industry that pays millions of dollars annually to keep the myth of mental illness alive and expanding.

The Evidence;

Here I would like to list some facts that speak for themselves.

• 100 million people worldwide are on psychotropic drugs

• In addition to crippling scores of people daily, every month psychiatric drugs kill an estimated 3,000 worldwide.

• 70% of all psychiatrics drugs are prescribed by general physicians.

• 374 mental disorders are listed; almost all with out a single scientific test to prove they actually exist biologically.

• Psychiatric drugs in 1966 were 44 but by today that has risen to over 180.

• The top five drugs gross more money than half the world’s nations.

• Drugs make over a third of a trillion dollars a year.

• 20 million children around the world are prescribed psychiatric drugs (USA 9 million alone). Most under 5 years old for non-scientific problems.

• Every 75 seconds someone is involuntarily committed a mental institution in the US alone.

• Electric shock therapy is still in use even though it causes memory loss and has little long term benefit to the patients. This is straight forward abuse of Human Rights.

All the above were researched by the Citizens Commission on Human Rights and backed worldwide by some of the most eminent psychiatrists and psychologists today.

The long list above is only the tip of the psychiatric abuse saga. It is a profession based on money and more money. Most drugs in the market are only tested for less than eight weeks in clinical trials before being given FDA approval by a panel of psychiatrists paid for by the very drug companies they are supposed to be regulating. Not a single medical drug on the market today is free of side effects which of course are the real effects of taking dangerous drugs for often fictisous mental illnesses. You cannot solve a life issue my masking it with drugs and expecting to feel better. The issue is still there – so you have to take the drugs for a lifetime in order to never think about your real problems. Of course with the side effects of one drug you are prescribed many others all to combat each others effects – so most people with a diagnosis of mental problems end up on a cocktail of drugs for life. It is amazing the amount of money people spend to chemically anesthetise themselves when a tiny proportion of that cost could be spent seeing a counsellor, psychologist and therapist and actually dealing with their issues and never having to take a drug in the fist place.

Conclusions

Psychiatry, disables, kills and creates drug addicts. Simple really when you add up the costs to society. Do they still have a place in modern medicine at all? Well yes, they could concentrate on helping severely disturbed people with understanding, kindness even when they may have to assert some control over that individual for a short time. However for the vast majority of patients taking psychotropic drugs they could stop them tomorrow (or at least phase them out to minimise withdrawal effects) and start going to see a therapist. I would recommend a counsellor skilled in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for depression and anxiety, Transactional Analysis for parenting, communications skills, stress at work and many other day to day issues that require some practical skills insight. For personality problems with anger, emotional turmoil, long term unhappiness and dysfunction then a psychoanalyst would be perhaps your choice. Most psychologists who treat patients in counselling are Eclectic this means they borrow from many styles of theory and practice to use the most appropriate approach based on each clients needs. The list is endless but any therapy that helps you to become stable, responsible for your own actions and gives you the insight into choices is better by far than a life time of drugs and unhappiness.

If you feel the need – go see a therapist today – find out how to get away from dispensed drugs and start to find a purpose in life again.

References:

Citizens Commission on Human Rights – 2009 – Psychiatric Violations of Human Rights

DVD Making a killing – Exposure of Drug Companies links to Psychiatry

DSM-IV Statistical Manual of Mental Illness – Version 4

R. Gross (1996) – Psychology – Theory of Mind and Behaviour – refs to historical notes. Hodder and Stoughton Publications (Words 1622)