A new study suggests that salty food is not as bad for your health as you might think as long as you are not eating very high amounts of salty food each day. This study is suggesting something completely different than previous studies. Public health messages are focused on convincing people to go for “low sodium” food in order to lower their blood pressure or to reduce the risk of stroke and similar health problems.
The Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE) study examined the average sodium intake in over 300 communities in 18 countries. The study included more than 90,000 people who were followed for approximately eight years. The study showed that the harmful effect of sodium showed up only in communities that consumed more than 5 grams of sodium on a daily basis which is equivalent of 2.5 teaspoons of salt.
Dr. Deepak Gupta, an assistant professor of medicine in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center who was involved in a study said:
“Communities with the highest sodium intake had the strongest associations with higher blood pressure and risk of adverse outcomes.”
Health Anxiety Disorder
Do you spend hours on the internet researching health information? When you cough you think it could be cancer, not a regular cold? Even when you go to see a doctor and your results show that you are perfectly healthy, you still worry? You feel like something could be wrong. Health anxiety is a real issue in the 21st century when we are obsessed with our diet, looks, and the food we eat. Healthy anxiety disorder can be described when perfectly healthy people worry they might be sick, even when they don’t have symptoms or when they have minor symptoms such as a scratchy throat.
Dr. Timothy Scarella, instructor in psychiatry at Harvard Medical School says:
“People with health anxiety, for the most part, tend to fear severe illness, such as HIV, cancer, or dementia. They worry far less about strep throat, twisting their ankle, or getting a cold.”
The fear of having a serious illness can interfere with our daily lives. It can lead to unnecessary testing, wasting hours in a doctor’s office and spending months worrying that you might be seriously sick. Furthermore, people who have a health anxiety disorder often worry about their children’s health as well.
Health anxiety disorder is a relatively common condition, affecting approximately 4-5% of people. However, experts believe that the condition often remains under-reported and that the percentage of people affected could be around 12% or even more. Unlike other anxiety disorders which are more prevalent in women, health anxiety disorder appears to affect men and women equally.
Back to School Mental Health
The summer is almost over and it’s back to school time. For some children going back to school it can be exciting, but it can also be terrifying especially for teenagers who experience anxiety, bullying, stress, depression, and trauma. The important thing to remember when it comes to anxiety is that you have to face it, you can’t simply ignore it, hoping it will disappear. For 20% of children who experience anxiety, going back to school can worsen their symptoms. The first thing we have to notice is the problem that child has with going back to school and identify the root cause.
Speaking to a specialist is always a good idea. No matter how emotional children can get when it comes to going back to school, it’s important to remember that each child has some coping skills that can be used for helping them deal with school-related problems. Children need to be educated when it comes to mental health and the importance of their well-being. Schools, unfortunately, don’t always provide that education. However, specialists and even peers can have a positive effect on a child’s mental health.
People experiencing mental health issues often feel insecure about what they should do. Especially a child or teenagers. They are not going to reach out easily. This is where an adult should step in and talk to a teenager showing understanding and offering a helping hand without any judgment.