We’ve come to rely on our medicine for even the slightest inconvenience; the smallest headache, digestion problem or itch can be swept away in just minutes with the right treatment. We are so used to taking pills that we almost do it indiscriminately, without wondering whether it goes with a certain type of food we have, or with another treatment we receive. A simple omission like this however, can lead to serious problems, and we have to at least have some basic knowledge of medication and foods that aren’t compatible. This is important especially since some of these forbidden combinations can be so common, and many of us may happen to experience them. [Not a valid template] For this and many other reasons, we are going to tell you what medication and foods you shouldn’t combine, or avoid combining if possible, as well as what some of the side-effects could be. Take aged cheese, for example; this is an exquisite product of dairy, and while it may not be suitable for all tastes, there are plenty people enjoying it. What you should avoid when consuming aged cheese however are MAO inhibitors, such as antidepressants. Or rather, we should say you need to avoid consuming aged cheese when on antidepressants, because it contains a substance that can lead to high blood pressure. The substance is called tyramine, and it can also be found in wine or soy; wine and cheese are often together, so take care to avoid them both while on treatment. Throughout our lives, we take antibiotics several times, either to treat an aggressive cold, or to recover from surgery, or for various other reasons. What’s important during a treatment like this is avoiding dairy products, which can interfere with the absorption of the active ingredients of the medication, thus making the treatment ineffective. Very often, doctors see how medication and foods collide for the worse, preventing the proper curing of a patient, and this is especially in regards to anti-depressant medication. [Not a valid template] Thus, if you are being treated with antidepressants and anti-anxiety medication, you need to avoid consuming alcohol, grapefruit juice and coffee, or beverages that contain caffeine. Alcohol should also be avoided by those who take diabetes drugs, sleeping pills, and even by those who take flu and cold medication. Even a single taste of alcohol can make you terribly sick, it can enhance the side effects of your drugs, and give you low blood sugar levels. As for the grapefruit or grapefruit juice, avoid mixing it with blood thinners, medication lowering cholesterol, tranquilizers or other blood pressure medication, because it destroys many of the enzymes in our organism which are responsible with not letting too much medication enter our system.
Western medicine has evolved a lot, especially during the 20th century when we managed to stabilize numerous vaccines, successfully treat or cure various diseases, and make much progress in the way of treating (so-far) incurable illnesses. However for some, the way our medicine has evolved is not necessarily a progress as well, because we have a tendency to solve every minor issue through medication; treatment is more practiced than prevention, so certain people have to combine different types of medication in order to treat a single health issue. But what happens to our bodies when we stuff them full of pills, how to we know when our doctors prescribe too much and, most importantly, how can we make sure one treatment won’t interfere with another? [Not a valid template] To begin with, this should be monitored by your specialist, or by your general physician, but a quick solution is a medication interaction checker. The reason why you mightn’t have thought of asking your physician about certain medication interaction is because you’re on an ongoing treatment for a certain condition, but something unpredictable turns up, like a stomach or headache. Normally, you’d just take one of those over-the-counter remedies, but since you’re on a rather more special treatment, you can’t risk one interfering with the other, or both with your health. In these situations, a quick online search for a medication interaction checker can save you a lot of trouble, and perhaps even the costs of an extra consultation. Before you get too excited with the idea that this information is available out there, you should know that the medication interaction checker is just a simple software, and could not replace the valuable advice of a physician or specialist doctor. If you suffer from a serious condition, such as an illness of the heart, or psychiatric imbalances, then you need to be very, very careful about the medication you take. A medication interaction checker can help you avoid taking headache pills while on treatment with a certain type of medication, but sometimes a big difference can be made by the dosages you take, by how often you take your pills, by age and gender, and even by other secondary conditions you may suffer. [Not a valid template] Another piece of information you should know is that there is more than one website offering a medication interaction checker, so if you’re not sure about the results on one of them, you can try several and see whether they offer the same advice. Moreover, if you have a serious physical condition, avoid following the advice of a checker, even if they are well up to date. Nothing can fully replace the expertise and experience of a trained physician, and no amount of laziness should replace concern for your own health.
The year 2013 is done, and we’re looking forward to the developments of 2014 and what it has to bring. There have been many discoveries last year, but today we want to focus on some of the most impressive medical breakthroughs of 2013. This is a subject that concerns and interests us all, even if we are currently healthy. Although Western medicine is quite evolved and has managed to solve some important health problems for us, there are still enough issues to concern us yet, not to mention that new diseases or conditions are also discovered all the time. [Not a valid template]
- Parkinson’s Disease – This is a difficult condition, a neurodegenerative disease that causes the patient to lose control of their limbs and shake uncontrollably; this is just one of the main symptoms, and others may include the loss of smell, or a rigidity of facial expression. The medical breakthroughs of 2013 related to this disease are the discovery of a method that helps detect Parkinson’s at a much earlier stage, and it is suspected the method could function with Alzheimer’s as well. The test is done by collecting a panel of spinal fluid from the patient.
- In vitro fertility – One of the most popular treatments in recent years, because more and more people suffer from fertility issues that leave them unable to conceive by natural means. There are many ways in which a person can remain pregnant, but so far medicine has had its limits; if a woman’s eggs were poor quality, or non-existent, there was nothing science could do to get her pregnant with her own children. However, in 2013, scientists have developed a method that allows and helps women produce healthy eggs that can then be successfully fertilized. The process is named in vitro activation and it was developed by researchers from the Stanford University.
- Clostridium dificile – This is a disease that many patients contract in hospitals, and it has to do with poor hygiene, dirty surfaces, and other microbial sources that people come in contact with. It is also a cause for numerous medical negligence claims, even if hospital staff do their best to keep everything sterile; Clostridium dificile leads to diarrhea and even a fatal inflammation of the colon. On a different note, it is known that with many bowel issues, an uncommon treatment is excrement from a healthy patient, which is why a doctor had the incredible idea of creating a “poop pill”, meaning a pill that contains fecal bacteria which is good for the organism, and which actually helps us fight bacteria that causes grave harm.