Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Marla Ahlgrimm: The Value of Virtual Medicine

Social media and other technology has made it easier than ever to take advantage of virtual healthcare, says Marla Ahlgrimm. Women, especially, turned to the Internet with questions about everything from weight gain and acne to hormone disorders and animal bites. Has this unbridled access to information done more harm than good? Research indicates that the three key ways women utilize the World Wide Web for health related topics are finding information, accessing support, and communicating with healthcare providers. Here, Ahlgrimm outlines the pros and cons of each.

Finding medical information

Sites like Facebook are extremely valuable when it comes to connecting and keeping up with healthcare providers. Many physicians and medical practices regularly update their social media accounts with relevant information, notes Marla Ahlgrimm. However, a 2014 study found that the majority of online searchers depended upon information-oriented sites such as Wikipedia for their medical fact-finding. Unfortunately, these websites are not written nor reviewed by medical professionals and often contain advice or misinformation which could be damaging to a woman’s health.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Marla Ahlgrimm Discusses Food Allergies in Adults and Children

It is estimated that 15 million Americans suffer from some form of food allergy. This includes nearly one in every 13 children, reports Marla Ahlgrimm. Food allergies can be fatal and even with heightened precautions, complete avoidance cannot be guaranteed. In the following summary, Ahlgrimm touches on symptoms and risk factors of common food allergies.

Common allergens

According to Marla Ahlgrimm, shellfish, fish, tree nuts, soy, peanuts, eggs, cow’s milk, and wheat are the eight foods most likely to cause an allergic reaction. The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology explains that most allergies make themselves known during early childhood. However, adults are not immune to sudden allergic responses, even in foods they have consumed their entire lives.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Marla Ahlgrimm on the Body’s Need to Stay the Same

Dieting is not easy, as nearly two-thirds of Americans currently trying to shed excess weight will find out, says Marla Ahlgrimm. Overweight people are often assumed to have gotten that way as a result of overeating and under-exercising. The truth may actually be more complicated.

A battle against biology

According to Marla Ahlgrimm, losing weight is not as easy as calories in/calories out. This is especially true for those who have been overweight their entire lives. During the initial dieting phase, a person’s biology tries to resist weight loss by any means possible. As mass is lost, leptin, a hormone produced by fat cells, declines. The brain interprets this as starvation and directs the rest of the body to conserve energy. One of the first things that happens after this internal alarm is triggered is a sudden drop in metabolism.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Marla Ahlgrimm | Alternative Treatments for Peripheral Neuropathy

Marla Ahlgrimm
Peripheral neuropathy (PN) is a disease that manifests from damage to the peripheral nervous system. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, PN affects women more often than men. The disease presents with a number of troublesome symptoms including numbness and tingling, sensitivity to touch, muscle weakness, and lack of coordination. In severe cases, organ dysfunction and paralysis may occur. There is no cure for peripheral neuropathy, but several alternative treatments may help manage symptoms for the one in 15 women affected.

Acupuncture

Two separate studies in 2007 and 2010 found that acupuncture was significantly more effective at improving PN symptoms than a placebo or medication without acupuncture therapy, reports Marla Ahlgrimm.

Massage

Though it may seem counterintuitive, and despite sensitivity to touch, massage may actually help PN in several ways. Marla Ahlgrimm explains that a professional massage can help alleviate pain, increase flexibility, and improve sleep.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Marla Ahlgrimm Explains Restless Leg Syndrome

Restless leg syndrome (RLS) is a neurological disorder that affects roughly 7.5 million adults in the United States, according to health advocate Marla Ahlgrimm. RLS affects a person in many ways but most bothersome is its interference with natural sleep patterns. According to the RLS Foundation, restless leg syndrome may be related to family history, iron deficiency, renal failure, and neuropathy. Marla Ahlgrimm reports that as yet no single cause has been identified.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Advanced-Age Breast Cancer Patients Challenge Online Survival Models | Marla Ahlgrimm

ePrognosis is a tool used by doctors when determining if chemotherapy is a desirable treatment option for patients facing a breast cancer diagnosis. It’s lauded for its accuracy when determining survival rates for otherwise healthy women. However, as Marla Ahlgrimm explains, older patients with other health concerns are crushing the tool’s expectations.

Q:  Why is it important to decide for or against chemotherapy? Shouldn’t everyone consider it?

Marla Ahlgrimm: Chemotherapy and other forms of cancer treatment are extremely hard on the body. People with other major health conditions may not recover from chemo and can actually experience unnecessary pain and suffering as a result. For older patients especially, understanding prognosis and life expectancy both with and without chemotherapy can help them determine if the added stress on their bodies is worth the outcome.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Marla Ahlgrimm | Lose Weight and Lower Risk of Breast Cancer

Marla Ahlgrimm
Breast cancer affects women of all ages, races, and lifestyles. It’s a devastating disease that can threaten a woman’s self-esteem, diminish her sense of femininity and be life threatening. Here, Marla Ahlgrimm offers pointers on reducing the risks of breast cancer.

Q: How does obesity contribute to a woman’s risk of breast cancer?

Marla Ahlgrimm: Fat cells produce estrogen from the time a woman is born. However, after menopause, fat cells become the body’s primary source of estrogen. An overweight woman will produce more estrogen than her average-weighted counterpart, increasing her chances of getting breast cancer. Additionally, obese women tend to have higher levels of insulin, which has also been linked to breast and other cancers.

Q: Does a woman’s weight at any certain stage of her life have a more profound effect on her risk for breast cancer?

Marla Ahlgrimm: Studies have found evidence that suggests weight gain later in life, and especially after menopause, contributes to a woman’s risk of breast cancer more so than weight acquired in the pre-teen stages. A woman who has always been obese will have a slightly lower chance of getting breast cancer than a similarly-sized woman who gained the excessive weight in adulthood.