chest pain

  1. Heart attack symptoms in women are different

    When heart attacks strike without chest pain

    Most people think they know the classic signs of a heart problem: a sudden pain in the chest and in some cases right up the arm.

    And that's true... some of the time.

    But more than a third of the time, heart patients feel no chest pain at all, even during a heart attack -- and new research shows that heart attacks in women are different are more likely to occur without this classic telltale symptom.

    In fact, heart symptoms in women are up to 50 percent less likely to involve chest pain during acute coronary syndrome than men, according to a new study of roughly 1,000 heart patients.

    Acute coronary syndrome is when the flow of blood to the heart is blocked, and includes everything from angina to an actual heart attack. And while it's perfectly understandable that many patients may not recognize the warning signs right away, it's practically unforgivable that many doctors don't as well.

    But they don't.

    As a result, patients without chest pain -- especially women -- are often told nothing's wrong. They're told to go home and rest, that maybe it's just gas. And they're told not to worry -- when, in fact, they have every reason to worry, because the absence of chest pain doesn't mean the heart attack is less severe.

    You could experience "the big one" -- a heart attack so massive your life is on the line -- with no chest pain at all, according to the study of heart attack symptoms in women.

    While the new study focused on heart attack symptoms in women under the age of 55, it's a fact that even older women can experience heart attack and other heart problems without the expected chest pain.

    But since many doctors still don't understand this, it's essential that you do -- that you learn the warning signs yourself, so you can insist on getting the care you need when you need it most.

    After chest pain, the most common warning signs include shortness of breath, cold sweats, feeling hot, sudden weakness and pain down the left arm or in the left shoulder.

    Remember, surviving that initial heart problem isn't the end of the battle -- it's the start of a war, one where your life is on the line every day.

    Once you're out of the hospital, begin work on a natural regimen to strengthen your heart -- including changes to your diet and in some cases the addition of heart-friendly supplements.

    I recommend working with a holistic medical doctor.

  2. Obese people more likely to be hospitalized

    Play the heavy and you may head for the hospital

    No one wants to be hospitalized -- but millions of people are heading there anyway, whether they know it or not.

    They're eating their way right into the ER.

    We know that people who are fatter tend to be sicker. We know they have a higher risk of heart disease, diabetes, and an early death. And it makes sense that they'd spend more time in the hospital as a result.

    And now, a new study shows how every extra pound ups that risk of being hospitalized -- and if this doesn't give you a direct incentive to lose some weight, I don't know what will.

    It starts with a single point on the BMI chart -- one point beyond normal and into "overweight." That one point, maybe not even noticeable on the waistline, will increase your risk of being hospitalized by 4 percent.

    If you're just a point overweight, it's up to you to decide if you want to live with that risk or drop a few pounds and bring it back down to where it should be. But many people can only dream about being just one point too heavy -- and for them, the increase in risk is even higher, because every point on the BMI chart increases that risk by another 4 percent.

    So if you're five points too heavy, your risk of being hospitalized is 20 percent higher -- not small at all. And if you're 10 points over the line, you're 40 percent more likely to end up in the hospital.

    The study in the International Journal of Obesity didn't find a single reason for all these extra hospitalizations. More like a list of reasons -- and not coincidentally, it's all the diseases and conditions that tag along with obesity, including diabetes, heart disease, chest pain, asthma, and arthritis.

    With two thirds of Americans now overweight or obese, that means a lot of people are going to be hospitalized as some point -- but if there's any good news here, it's that the study points to the easiest way yet to stay out of the hospital: lose the weight.

    Some people can commit to lifestyle changes on their own and bring themselves down to a normal weight. Others need help -- and if that's you, don't be afraid to ask for that help. A holistic doctor like me can provide you with a comprehensive and personalized weight loss plan that will work.

    And for one way NOT to lose weight, keep reading.

  3. A wake-up call for bad sleep habits

    Judging by myself and my patients -- not to mention the bags under the eyes of many of the people I meet each day -- I'd say the biggest problem when it comes to sleep is that we don't get nearly enough of it.
  4. How to know when you're having a heart attack

    You might think heart attacks don't discriminate, but that's not actually true. They do discriminate -- and it's a form of discrimination that's killing women.
  5. Natural solutions for gout

    Gout used to be known as "the rich man's disease" because it usually struck the wealthy -- the only ones who could afford to over-consume the foods that cause this painful form of arthritis. Today, you don't have to be rich (or even a man) to suffer from gout -- just fat. And since more people are fatter than ever before, more people are also battling the foot pain that marks this condition.
  6. How not to quit smoking

    A long list of risks just got even longer: The feds now say the anti-smoking drug Chantix can boost the odds of a heart attack.
  7. Diet soda linked to heart risk

    A new study finds that people who drink diet soda regularly could find a heart attack or stroke at the bottom of their next bottle.
  8. Unapproved meds sold by the millions

    The prescription drugs approved by the FDA are bad enough. But just think about the drugs that never even went through that process.

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