I know finals week isn’t the greatest time to talk about nutrition, but I’m doing it anyway.
I’ve been trying for a long time to articulate exactly why processed foods are the worst, and that sugar is in everything, and [insert long and exhausting rant about food here]. This article does a good job of summarizing how calories just aren’t equivalent:
Still Believe ‘A Calorie is a Calorie’? (Dr. Lustig was on The Colbert Report if you’re interested in watching his interview!)
I did a presentation on high fructose corn syrup a few weeks ago in my Drug Information class discussing the biochemical differences between HFCS and glucose, and it was quite enlightening. (Summary: fructose doesn’t stimulate the release of insulin and lectin, which are vital hormones for digestion/appetite control–also fructose doesn’t cross into your brain like glucose does to tell it to stop eating, and your brain needs sugar to live!).
Anyway, the best advice you can take away is to eat more fruits and vegetables and less processed foods. As little as possible! If you’re on a budget, frozen food works, canned is better than nothing (just watch the sodium and other ingredients).
Be vigilant of your food labels. Look for things with a lot of saturated fat, sodium, and sugar, and stay away from it. I’ve also mad ea habit of staying away from things with ingredients lists that are paragraphs long (have you seen a Cheez-It box lately?).
I totally missed Therapeutics Thursday this week. So just pretend it’s Thursday and bear with me.
I thought now that the weather has finally broken and it feels like spring time, I’d talk about allergies. Everyone’s favorite part about springtime!
So you have horrible allergies? What should you take? For runny noses sneezing, the absolute best is Benadryl (diphenydramine)–but if you’ve ever taken it before, you know it will put you to sleep. That’s because it can cross into your brain and hit your histamine receptors there. Then it’s all nap time.
That’s why there’s Claritin (loratadine), Zyrtec (cetirizine), and Allegra (fexofenadine), which we’d call “second generation antihistamines” that don’t cross into your brain as much. All of them have generics now (YAY).
All of them also have a formulation paired with pseudoephedrine (Sudafed), which are called “____-D” and you can find them behind the counter at your friendly neighborhood pharmacy. Bring your ID for those! Don’t do the pseudoephedrine formulations if you have high blood pressure though. The pseudoephedrine will help if you’re really stuffed up (not runny) and at risk for sinus infections. (Side note: DO NOT DRINK ORANGE JUICE WITH ALLEGRA. It won’t absorb as well.)
These products should get rid of most of your sinus-y, nasally allergies. What about eyes? If they’re really severe, you can pick up some Zaditor antihistamine eye drops. I had a pharmacist tell me that these can even be a good alternative for patients who can’t afford the ultra-expensive prescription Pataday allergy eye drops!
There’s also the suggestion out there to eat local bee pollen (or locally made honey) to decrease your allergy sensitivity. I personally think bee pollen tastes like pond water, and if you have severe allergies or have a lot of food allergies, you will want to stay away from bee pollen. If you have mild seasonal allergies and you can find it (farmer’s markets!) then it’s worth a try.
And that’s what I know about allergies! I’m open to questions in the comments!
Tagged: allegra, allergies, bee pollen, butler college of pharmacy, claritin, eye drops, honey, pseudoephedrine, seasonal allergies, sudafed, therapeutics thursday, zaditor, zyrtec
I’m going to start a new thing called Therapeutics Thursdays where I spout knowledge at you and probably take unnecessary jabs at Dr. Oz.
He’s right about 50% of the time, I’ll give him that.
Actually today we’re going to talk about marijuana.
On Tuesday, I presented this article to my public health class, and today we had a simply riveting debate in our substance abuse class about the uses of medical marijuana. It’s been a grand old time!
So the article really highlights more of the prosecution of possession in Indiana, which fascinates me because if you read carefully: a commission of judges, prosecutors, probation officers, and a bunch of people who know what they’re talking about looked at Indiana’s criminal code for 3 years and presented their recommendations to lower penalties, save some money, and do some community programming and treatment for people they catch. And Gov. Pence (aka the white-haired Frisch’s Big Boy)–
–thinks status quo is working just dandy.
It’s a cool read.
Anyway I found this awesome DEA fact sheet on the complete opposite spectrum if you’re interested in that.
Unfortunately I’d have to practically write a dissertation to really get this topic started. If you ask me, I think Indiana lawmakers are on to something at least to the effect that throwing people in jail isn’t really an effective way to deal with this particular substance.
And that’s a wrap for our first Therapeutics Thursday! Next week I’ll talk about diabetes or red yeast rice or something.
Tagged: butler college of pharmacy, butler university, college, cophs, dr oz, governor mike pence, health, marijuana, medical marijuana, public health, therapeutics thursday