Spring Allergies - Charlotte Ranks #47
Each year the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America releases their report that includes a ranking of the top 100 worst cities in America for spring allergies, as they did at the end of March this year. Charlotte, North Carolina was ranked #47 (the worst being the lowest number) - up (a bit!) from last year's rank of #40. You may view the entire list at: http://www.aafa.org/pdfs/FINAL_public_LIST_Spring_2014.pdf
If you are effected by seasonal allergies you may be surprised that Charlotte is not closer to the worst-of-the-worst than #47. Many of us in the Charlotte area are miserable due to what is commonly called "hay fever".
With so many people seeking relief from allergies it should not be surprising to discover much is being learned about what can be done. There are new medications (both as prescriptions and over-the-counter remedies), there are "natural" treatments that many find effective and the list continues to grow as to ways to prevent or curtail how allergies affect each person.
Of course you should check with your health care provider before taking any medications, supplements or treatments for your allergies. Our pharmacists and/or staff will be glad to help with your decision making process, too. Please contact us - anytime. This month we have some great allergy relief products among our featured items!
Some simple steps of prevention include:
- Stay inside when the pollen count is highest - in this area that usually in the morning.
- Keep your home air filter(s) very fresh and clean
- Remove your clothing as soon as you come inside; wear "inside" clothing ONLY inside
- Wash your hair at least every day - to remove allergens that may be "riding along"
- Vacuum your surroundings often enough to remove dust and pollen
- Use eye drops to relieve dry, itchy eyes
What Are the Expiration Dates on Your Meds?
As we return to Daylight Saving Time this weekend (Sunday, March 9th) we will be expected not only to "spring forward" all of our clocks but there are several other reminders that have become tied to that change.
The most universally popular - for good reason - may be to check/change the batteries in all of our smoke detectors. It has been determined that a working smoke detector more than doubles a person's chances of surviving a home fire.
We are also encouraged to change the direction of our ceiling fans. A fan’s blades should be spinning in a counterclockwise direction so that cool air is pushed downward during the warmer months.
When we change our clocks and timers has also become a good day to act as a reminder to change/check the various filters in our homes: furnace filters, refrigerator water filters, water pitcher filters, stove top exhaust fan filters, air purifier filters, AC filters, vacuum filters, humidifier filters, aquarium filters, etc. Other reminders include flipping our mattresses, checking our fire extinguishers, updating our first aid kits, if necessary, to mention only a few more.
Soon the warmer weather will encourage us to do more outside activities, so we want to add one more clearing/checking important task for inside our homes. Take a few minutes to check your medicine cabinet or closet shelves for any expired or unneeded prescription drugs, over-the-counter remedies and supplements. If you do find some questionable products you are welcome and encouraged to bring them to either of our stores. If products do need to be discarded we have the safest way to do that and will be happy to do it for you - just bring them into our stores.
Whether we will do all of these activities or only a few, it would appear we will have a busy weekend! Enjoy your time and be safe, we want to keep you as our friend for many, many seasons.
Are you eating too much sugar?
What a perfect time to write a cautionary note about our consumption of excess sugar than on the heels of Valentine's Day, right?
According to the latest information, even though more candy is sold in the U.S.A. close to Halloween than any other time, Valentine's Day still tops the list for the most sales of chocolate.
But is eating a lot of candy a good idea? Probably not. And, not just candy.
It is baffling to learn that the consumption of added sugars in the diets of many Americans is still on the rise. New information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states Americans are eating too much sugar and it is killing us. As the consumption of added sugars rises, so too does the risk of dying from heart disease. According to the data, compared with those individuals who got less than 10% of their daily calories from sugar, those with 10-25% of their daily calories coming from sugar were 30% more likely to die of cardiovascular disease. Those with more than 25% of their daily calories coming from sugar were twice as likely to die of cardiovascular disease. This becomes even more significant considering that cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S.
The concern is not related to the sugars occurring naturally in fruits and vegetables. Instead, it’s the added sugars in foods such as sugary drinks and beverages, candy, desserts and other sweetened carbohydrate snacks. In fact, most processed foods we consume have added sugar to make them taste better.
It is to our benefit to be more aware of ALL of the foods and drinks we consume and continue (or, begin!) to make very sensible choices. Maybe next holiday we can celebrate with an apple and a walk around the block, right?
Read previous articles here.
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