- ABCs of Health – “L” is for Lungs
- Importance of Indoor Air Quality (IAQ)
- Tip of the Month – Make an ice pack
- The Herbalist – “W” is for Walnut Leaf
ABCs OF HEALTH
“L” is for lungs. You breathe in and out anywhere from 15 to 25 times per minute without even thinking about it. When you exercise, your breathing rate goes up — again, without you thinking about it. You breathe so regularly that it is easy to take your lungs for granted. You can’t even stop yourself from breathing if you try!
Your lungs are located within your chest cavity inside the rib cage. They are made of spongy, elastic tissue that stretches and constricts as you breathe. The airways that bring air into the lungs (the trachea and bronchi) are made of smooth muscle and cartilage, allowing the airways to constrict and expand. The lungs and airways bring in fresh, oxygen-enriched air and get rid of waste carbon dioxide made by your cells. In mechanical terms, our lungs can be described as the site of gas exchange: Oxygen–the fuel all the cells and organs of our body need to function–is extracted there from the air we inhale and infused into the bloodstream, to be distributed to other organs and tissues. With each exhalation, we dispose of the carbon dioxide that is the by-product of our bodily processes. In our lungs, in the course of a single day, an astonishing 8,000 to 9,000 liters of breathed-in air meet 8,000 to 10,000 liters of blood pumped in by the heart through the pulmonary artery. The lungs relieve the blood of its burden of waste and return a refreshed, oxygen-rich stream of blood to the heart through the pulmonary vein.
The lungs must play multiple roles–supplier of oxygen, remover of wastes and toxins, defender against hostile intruders. They contain at least three dozen distinct types of cells, each with its special tasks and abilities. Some scavenge foreign matter. Others, equipped with delicate, hairlike cilia, sweep the mucous membranes lining the smallest air passages. Still others act on substances crucial to blood-pressure control, or serve as sentries to spot invading agents of infection.
Though the lungs are internal organs, they are, uniquely, constantly exposed to our external environment–a direct interface with the world outside. With each breath, a host of alien substances enter our bodies–pollens, dust, viruses, bacteria; the constituents of the air in our homes and offices and factories, ranging from animal dander and tobacco smoke to radon and airborne lead; the toxic chemicals spewed into our atmosphere by smokestacks and tailpipes.
IMPORTANCE OF AIR QUALITY (IAQ)
Indoor air quality (IAQ) is an important health concern, because most Canadians spend up to 90% of their time indoors. We can be exposed to a variety of indoor air contaminants from how we heat our indoor spaces, to the products that we buy, and from the way we choose to live our lives. However, some people are very sensitive to IAQ and can become ill from poor air quality. People with asthma or other respiratory illnesses can suffer tremendously from poor IAQ.
AIR QUALITY AT HOME
Your home should be a safe and comforting place, not a potential source of illness. We spend up to 90% of our time indoors and poor indoor air quality (IAQ) at home can be a real problem in both new and older homes. New carpet, fabrics, and building materials can be sources of IAQ contaminants. Older homes often have a build up of dust, mould, and moisture problems that can cause sickness or exacerbate respiratory illnesses and allergies.
Poor IAQ problems at home can be a result of a number of common and unsuspected sources. Tobacco smoke, oil furnaces, wood stoves, gas stoves and ovens, and cleaning solvents are the usual suspects for releasing harmful pollutants in the air at home. But don’t forget about moisture, fabrics and building materials, dust, plants, and even the family pet (sorry Buffy) as potential sources of IAQ problems. Check out the common IAQ problems in each of the rooms listed below.
The good news is that you CAN DO something right now to improve the IAQ in your home.
AIR QUALITY AT THE WORK PLACE
The building you work in is another indoor environment that can have air quality problems. Indoor air quality (IAQ) at the office or workplace is subject to much of the same IAQ problems at home. Building materials, carpets, cleaning products, tobacco smoke and ventilation share the same IAQ challenges as the home. However, some IAQ problems such as scents and fragrances, automobile exhaust, cleaning solvents, and manufacturing activities can be more common at the workplace.
As an employee, your health may be at risk from poor IAQ at work. Poor IAQ can exacerbate allergies and asthma, cause eye, nose and throat irritation, or can result in fatigue, nausea or illness. The health effects of these symptoms can lead to poor work performance and productivity, as well as your own well being. In the long-term, these symptoms could also lead to sickness, missed work and loss of income.
As an employer, it’s your responsibility to ensure a safe and healthy work environment. Poor IAQ can impact the health of your employees and result in increased absenteeism, reduced productivity, and potential safety hazards. Increased health claims from IAQ related impacts or illnesses can be avoided. Talk to your employees today about their air quality concerns.
AT THE FACTORY
- Open doors around the loading dock allows engine emissions inside the workplace
- Emissions from gas and propane forklifts can cause nausea, fatigue and illness
- Manufacturing often requires chemicals and solvents in the production process
- Cleaning products used for some industrial activities can be quite harsh or toxic
TIP OF THE MONTH
Make an ice pack by filling a zipper-type freezer bag half way with 3 parts water and 1 part rubbing alcohol. Seal the bag and place inside another freezer bag and store it in the freezer. The alcohol will prevent the water from solidifying so you can “mold” the bag around the injury.
I promised I would give you some information on a specific herb, it’s origins and uses. I really enjoy this part of our newsletter, as I always learn something new and exciting. This month we will discuss:
Latin Name: Juglans nigra, Juglans regis (Juglandaceae [walnut] family)
Other common names: black walnut, white walnut
General Description: Walnut trees are native to the dry temperate zones of western Asia, China, India, and the southwestern United States. The tree is most often used in herbal medicine. The leaves are gathered in the spring and summer and dried for medicinal purposes. Walnut leaves have been used in herbal medicine for thousands of years.
Excellent For: For the last century walnut leaf has been known as one of the “most mild and efficient forms of laxatives” available. White walnut is used in homeopathy as a treatment for liver disorder and intestinal sickness. Black walnut bark is used to treat athlete’s foot and parasite infections. It expels rather than kill, worms during the normal course of a laxative-induced cleanse. It helps to relieve constipation, eliminate warts (which are growths of viruses). Externally when applied, black walnut is beneficial for eczema, herpes, psoriasis, and skin parasites. Black walnut is also used to balance blood-sugar levels and to burn up toxins and fatty materials.
Benefits of Walnut Leaf for specific conditions include the following:
Acne, exzema, and ringworm :Walnut leaves contain astringent tannins. These tannins cross-link skin cells, making them impermeable to allergens and infectious microorganisms. Walnut leaves contain relatively large concentrations of vitamin C, which helps to fight infection.
Excessive sweating : Walnut leaf washes, “shrink” the sweat glands, reducing perspiration. The herb’s tannins causes proteins in the cells lining the sweat glands to cross-link, effectively forming a barrier to the excretion of sweat.
Walnut leaf teas can be made into baths, compresses, and skin washes. This herb product is more likely to be obtained from herb shops and other herb suppliers. For a huge selection of bulk herbs, single herb supplements, Chinese herbs and more, visit Herbal Remedies – Herbs today. Herbal Remedies prides itself with their large product selection, great customer satisfaction rates, excellent service and low cost World Wide Delivery rates. Come see for yourself today.
CONTRAINDICATIONS: There are many products that are made with walnut hulls combined with other herbs in tinctures for use as a harsh laxative. You should not use the walnut hulls instead of walnut leaf for the conditions discussed above.
Via: Bye Bye Excessive Armpit SweatThis concludes another exciting issue of Natural Health. REMEMBER YOU HAVE TO READ TO WIN!