Archive for October, 2011

A Happy and Healthy Halloween from Canada Drugs

Posted by on October 31st, 2011

It’s not just the kids who go a candy crazy over Halloween! Who doesn’t love Halloween candy? It’s pretty easy to eat a whole bag of those awesome min-chocolate bars before you even realize that they’re gone. And when those candy bars are 80% off on November 1st? It’s even easier to eat them then!

Unfortunately, most of these Halloween goodies are loaded with an abundant amount of white sugar. This is no surprise since white sugar is added to a myriad of products as a cheap filler to improve taste.

In fact, it is estimated that the average North American consumes two to three pounds of sugar per week in products such as cereals, cookies, yogurts and even ketchup! As you can imagine, during the days around Halloween, the amount of consumed white refined sugar skyrockets.

What is the problem with a little white sugar? In addition to contributing to weight gain, white sugar can create a number of health problems in the body that include:

• Suppression of immune system function
• Fluctuation of energy levels
• Making the body more acidic
• Hyperactivity and impulse behavior
• Raised insulin levels
• Can elevate bad cholesterol (LDL) levels and lower good cholesterol (HDL) levels
• Can contribute to diabetes and heart disease.

Don’t deprive yourself of some Halloween treats, but remember to enjoy them in moderation. Have one or two candy bars, and not the entire bag, and try to balance the candy you do have by also easting more healthy food through the rest of the day. There’s no hard in treating yourself, but watch out for the tricks that too much junk food can play on all our health.

Happy Halloween from everyone at Canada Drugs!


Breast Cancer Awareness Month- Have you gone pink?

Posted by on October 19th, 2011

You’ve probably been seeing a little extra pink this past month, huh? That’s because October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which is an annual campaign by major breast cancer organizations to increase awareness of the disease. This includes educating the public about early detection, the cause, diagnosis, treatment, and support for survivors.

Breast cancer is the second most common cancer, and second-most common cause of cancer death in the United States. The lifetime risk for breast cancer in the U.S is 1 in 8, or 12%. The fact that this horrible disease is still so common is why the pink ribbons you see around in October touch so many people’s lives.

The awareness part of the campaign this month places an emphasis on early detection. Advancements in drug treatments, chemotherapy and other medical treatments have improved over the years thanks to money raised to fight this disease, but the Cancer Society still stress that early detection helps fight breast cancer more than other treatment method.While not every lump is cancerous, your chances of getting breast cancer increase once you’re fifty. So think of your breasts and get regular mammograms every two years once you turn 50.

Most women who develop breast cancer have no risk factors other than simply being a woman and getting older (especially being over 50). Talk to your doctor about your risk.

Other risk factors for breast cancer include (Info from National Breast Cancer Fondation):

  • having had breast cancer before
  • family history of breast cancer (especially in a mother, sister or daughter diagnosed before menopause or if mutations on BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes are present)
  • family history of ovarian cancer
  • an above-average exposure to the hormone estrogen, which your body naturally produces, perhaps because you:
  • have never given birth or gave birth for the first time after age 30
  • began menstruating at a young age
  • reached menopause later than average
  • have taken hormone replacement therapy (estrogen plus progestin) for more than five years
  • dense breast tissue (as shown on a mammogram)
  • a history of breast biopsies showing certain breast changes, such as an increased number of abnormal cells that are not cancerous (atypical hyperplasia)
  • radiation treatment to the chest area (for example, to treat Hodgkin lymphoma), especially before age 30

Some factors slightly increase your risk of breast cancer. You may be at slightly higher risk if you:

  • are obese (especially after menopause)
  • drink alcohol
  • take birth control pills (the Pill)

Some women develop breast cancer without having any of these risk factors. Most women with breast cancer do not have a family history of the disease.

Visit the National Breast Cancer Foundation for more information on how you can reduce risk factors and help contribute to this fight against this disease that has touched so many of our friends and family.

 

Image via http://www.mountsinai.org


Doubling Up Medication is Dangerous

Posted by on October 13th, 2011

We all get forgetful and make mistakes every day. Who hasn’t spent 15 minutes when you’re in rush looking for a missing set of car keys, or accidently added too much salt to a recipe? These types of incidents happen all the time, and the same type of mistakes can happen with medication, and that’s why it’s important to be aware of this and make sure not to forget a dose, or forget that you’ve already taken a dose and doubling up your medication. However, unlike ruining your dinner with the salt overdose, or missing the start of a movie because you couldn’t find your keys, forgetting about medication can cause you real harm.

At Canada Drugs, Canadian pharmacy we are aware that many of the medications our valued patients take can be dangerous if they are taken improperly, that’s why it’s important to make sure that you are being vigilant in how you dose your medication regime.

The Institute for Safe Medication Practices has some helpful tips that we recommended everyone should follow to ensure that you take your medication in a proper and safe manner.

  • Set an alarm to remind you when your next dose of medicine is due. It is best to use an alarm that you carry with you, such as an alarm on your cellular phone or watch. Make a point of taking your medicine as soon as you hear the alarm.
  • Use a calendar to help you keep track of your medicines. Your pharmacist may be able to give you a calendar that lists all your medicines and the times they should be taken. As soon as you have taken a dose of any medicine, check it off on the calendar. Every year Canada Drugs sends a helpful calendar that includes stickers to help you track your medication.
  • Use a pill organizer (also called a dosette) to sort your medicines by days of the week and times of the day. Pill organizers are available from most pharmacies. Being able to see your medicines in an organizer can make it easier to know whether or not you’ve taken a dose.
  • Some tablets and capsules are available in blister packs. Some of these blister packs are designed to help you keep track of the doses you have taken. If you’re taking many different medicines and you’re having trouble keeping track, consider asking your pharmacist whether it is possible to have your medicines specially prepared in blister packs.
  • If you are worried about your ability to keep track of your medicines, talk to your doctor or health care practitioner, like one of our pharmacists here at Canada Drugs.