Stay Healthy and Celebrate Nutrition Month with Southstar Drug

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Take charge and learn about good food choices this Nutrition Month from Southstar Drug. Proper nutrition starts with us.

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Dealing with Diabetes: Types, Symptoms, Treatment & Prevention

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Disclaimer: This article features medical and health topics for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to replace or serve as medical or professional advice for self-diagnosis, self-treatment, self-medication, or the like for any health-related condition or medical emergency. Make sure to consult a health care or medical professional for proper medical care, diagnosis, or treatment related to your situation.

What is Diabetes? 

Diabetes is a disease that affects how the body metabolizes blood sugar or glucose due to the body’s atypical response to insulin. In 2013, the Philippine Health Statistics cited diabetes as the 6th leading cause of death among Filipinos. Not a decade over, it remains as a major threat with the numbers growing rapidly. In the Philippines alone as of May 2020, the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) counts 3.9 million cases of diabetes in adults. At present, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 1 in 11 people around the world are suffering from diabetes. It is considered an international burden due to its debilitating nature and increasingly rising prevalence and cost of care, scaling up to a pandemic-like outbreak. 

With diabetes-specific complications, mortality is attributed to abnormalities developed in the kidneys, eyes, nerves, brain and even the heart. Unfortunately, many are unaware of the warning signs of diabetes, and may go undiagnosed until it is too late.  Knowing the types, symptoms, and preventive measures of diabetes can help us manage or even avoid developing this disease. 

Types of Diabetes 

There are three major types and other minor types that occur. 

Type 1 diabetes: This type of diabetes is mostly inherent in childhood. To this day, both cause and means of prevention are still unknown but some scientists believe genes and environmental factors may trigger this type of the disease. Type 1 is related to insulin deficiency where the immune system attacks the body, destroying insulin produced by the pancreas. Insulin helps transport glucose from food to the body’s supply of energy.  Without it, protein breaks down and muscle is lost, causing weight loss and eventual complications leading to fatality. To survive, people with type 1 diabetes must take insulin every day. Though there is no cure, people affected by type 1 can live longer with insulin therapy and have a chance at a normal life.
Type 2 diabetes: People who have type 2 diabetes are unable to make or use insulin well, which means that affected patients have insulin resistance where the body does not respond to insulin as expected. In contrast to type 1, the more common type 2 is acquired rather than inherited and tends to develop at an older age. In most cases, it is associated with increased body weight due to lack of exercise, unhealthy eating habits or family history of diabetes. To be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, a person must show a result of 200 milligrams of sugar per deciliter (mg/dL) or higher in a Random Blood Sugar Test. Symptoms of type 2 are less obvious at first, such as increased thirst, frequent urination and unintended weight loss. But if left untreated, serious complications like nerve damage, kidney disease, eye damage, hearing impairment among others can arise and lead to death. 
Gestational diabetes: This type occurs particularly during pregnancy when an expectant mother goes through hormonal changes along with diet and lifestyle adjustments. In some cases, some women experience insulin resistance as well. Additionally, other risk factors that cause this type of diabetes to develop during pregnancy include being overweight, having a family history of type 2 diabetes, having a hormone disorder called polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) or suffering from gestational diabetes during a previous pregnancy.
Impaired glucose tolerance (IGT): Also known as borderline diabetes or subclinical diabetes, this condition can lead to more serious health issues like developing type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. IGT is still reversible and can be preventable by losing weight, exercising more and eating a healthy, balanced diet. 
Impaired fasting glycemia (IFG): Also known as pre-diabetes, this type occurs before suffering from actual diabetes, as the name suggests. IFG appears in people who have higher than normal blood sugar level but is not high enough to be classified as type 2 diabetes. It starts to develop when the body is unable to use glucose efficiently and can lead to full-blown type 2 if unmanaged. However, this can be neutralized with diet and lifestyle changes to keep blood sugar levels from increasing.

 

Dealing with Diabetes

Amidst other concerns such as the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to become aware of how fatal diabetes can be and continue to push for awareness, prevention and promotion of a healthy diet and lifestyle. Contribute to flattening the rising trend of diabetes. In our own simple but mindful ways, we can take better care of ourselves to reduce the risk. 

WHO shares these important yet manageable steps against diabetes:

  1. Achieve and maintain a healthy body weight.
  2. Be physically active.
  3. Eat a healthy diet, avoiding sugar and saturated fats.
  4. Avoid tobacco use – smoking increases the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
  5. Have an annual check-up to monitor or ensure early diagnosis.

If you already have diabetes, make sure to go to your doctor for a check-up to know the treatment and medication that’s right for you. There are oral medications that are effective, safe, and inexpensive, but you may require the use of insulin injections or insulin pumps, depending on the type of diabetes you have and its severity. Regular blood sugar testing may also be necessary for diabetics who are already under maintenance to be able to safely administer the correct dose of insulin every time. Closely monitoring your carbohydrate intake and limiting foods that sharply increase your glucose levels may also help improve your condition and overall health.

Fight Diabetes with Southstar Drug

Take charge of your health and get what you need for diabetes prevention or maintenance. Southstar Drug carries a number of products and supplements to help you manage your condition. 

Diabetasol Nutrition Powder for Diabetic | Southstar Drug

Diabetasol is a product specially created as a diabetes nutrition supplement that is clinically proven to help maintain low Glycemic Index (GI) profile. This means it does not cause your blood glucose levels to increase rapidly and is a great source for balanced nutrition. It also creates a longer full feeling to prevent you from eating high-GI foods. What's even better about this product is it is packed with high calcium, high fiber, 11 vitamins, 6 minerals and is cholesterol-free. Available in vanilla and cappuccino flavors.

 

Glucerna Adult Nutritional Drink | Southstar Drug

Glucerna is another great-tasting nutrition product good for people with type 2 diabetes. It is designed to help provide the body with carbohydrates that are slower digesting, much like low-GI foods. It also helps to regulate blood sugar levels. It is available in various flavors such as vanilla and chocolate.

 

Nutren Diabetes is another option that is nutritionally balanced and formulated with 30 vitamins and minerals for individuals with impaired glucose tolerance. It helps meet the nutrition needed by people who have diabetes type I and II or hyperglycemia. What’s more, it is gluten-free, lactose-free, and available in Vanilla. 

 

Accu-check Test Strips | Southstar Drug

Accu Chek Test Strips is used for self-testing to determine the body’s current blood glucose level. These test strips must be used with a compatible Accu-Chek Instant blood glucose meter.

FreeStyle Optium Neo Blood Glucose & Ketone Monitoring System | Southstar Drug

 

Freestyle Smart Buy Kit is a blood glucose and ketone monitoring system that comes with an Optium Neo Meter and 1 box of 50 Optium Test Strips. This offering is best for first-time users who do not yet have a blood glucose meter and are looking for something simple, easy and reliable to use.

Having diabetes is challenging, but knowing the right treatment and management regimen can help prevent further complications and anyone suffering from it can still live a normal life. Ultimately, awareness and a healthy lifestyle are important to help prevent or manage diabetes.

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What is Dengue?: Symptoms, Treatment & Prevention

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Learn about dengue fever, the best way to treat it and how to prevent contracting it.

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National Safe Kids Week Inspires to Raise Awareness and Advocacy

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Education, advocacy, and support to National Safe Kids Week and beyond.

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CAN YOU HEAR ME?

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A guide to ear care

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THE SURPRISING TRUTH ABOUT VITAMINS

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Vitamins, the ultimate performer in one’s body that help absorb food nutrients, repair tissues, and strengthen the immune system are also known as micronutrients. This is because you only need a minuscule amount of it in your body!

A quick Google search yields that vitamins are organic compounds that come from the food you eat, supplements you take, and the environment you’re in. So now maybe you’re asking “If I only need a tiny amount of vitamins & minerals and I’m already eating healthy, have a balanced diet and live in a nice environment, should I still continue taking supplements?”, well, that totally depends!

You need at least 30 essential vitamins and minerals which your body cannot produce alone, that’s why supplements are important to help increase the level of micronutrients your body needs to perform well.

But Dr. Marc Leavy, a primary care internist at Mercy Medical Center, Baltimore, doesn’t recommend ingesting supplements daily as getting more than what’s needed could lead to complications.

But then again, our bodies and diet differ from one another. You may be lacking some Vitamin C, which you could get from eating citrus fruits, and getting enough Vitamin D, which you could get from consuming fatty fish and seafood.

Well, you may already have an idea of what you’re lacking and getting, but it’s still better to consult your doctor about this. Oh, and for your supplement needs, always remember that there’s a Southstar Drug near you!

Vitamins, the ultimate performer in one’s body that help absorb food nutrients, repair tissues, and strengthen the immune system are also known as micronutrients. This is because you only need a minuscule amount of it in your body!

A quick Google search yields that vitamins are organic compounds that come from the food you eat, supplements you take, and the environment you’re in. So now maybe you’re asking “If I only need a tiny amount of vitamins & minerals and I’m already eating healthy, have a balanced diet and live in a nice environment, should I still continue taking supplements?”, well, that totally depends!

You need at least 30 essential vitamins and minerals which your body cannot produce alone, that’s why supplements are important to help increase the level of micronutrients your body needs to perform well.

But Dr. Marc Leavy, a primary care internist at Mercy Medical Center, Baltimore, doesn’t recommend ingesting supplements daily as getting more than what’s needed could lead to complications.

But then again, our bodies and diet differ from one another. You may be lacking some Vitamin C, which you could get from eating citrus fruits, and getting enough Vitamin D, which you could get from consuming fatty fish and seafood.

Well, you may already have an idea of what you’re lacking and getting, but it’s still better to consult your doctor about this. Oh, and for your supplement needs, always remember that there’s a Southstar Drug near you!

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7 CORONAVIRUS PREVENTION TIPS

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7 Coronavirus prevention tips

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SELF-LOVE IN THE TIME OF CORONA

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The world has been preoccupied with panic and dismay surrounding the Covid-19 virus. With 2,475,841 cases worldwide as of writing, feeling worried and overwhelmed is a normal response. However, we have the full control to take action in fending for ourselves in the 4 or 5 or more walls of our homes.

We’ve put together a self-love & care list to keep you guided on what you can do to improve your mental and overall well-being at this time of global crisis.

1. MOVE IT

At this time of quarantine, most people just stay in bed to work and sleep. What they forget to do is to keep active to make their blood continuously flow to their hearts. So, it’s vital to keep moving everyday—doing simple household chores can help in keeping your system intact.

2. MEDITATE

Take time to calm yourself. Going zen for 10 minutes is just enough to keep your mind afloat. There are lots of tutorial videos on Youtube that can help you reach nirvana or someplace else that your mind wants to go!

3. SOCIALIZE

Being stuck at home doesn’t mean you can’t socialize! Check on your friends or invite them for a video chat. There are plenty of video chatting platforms that offer fun and engaging screen backgrounds to keep you and your friends entertained.

4. READ & LEARN

Want to learn how to cook? To exercise? To build a plane? There are thousands of online articles, platforms and forums for those that can help you kickstart your way to a new hobby. Remember! It’s never too late to start building your career!

5. UNLEASH THE RAMSAY IN YOU

When you learn something new, you want to put it to the test. Remember that easy to make mouth-watering dish that you saw online? Try making that in your kitchen! You’ll never know, you might be the next Gordon Ramsay of the Philippines!

6. LOCKDOWN PLAYLIST

According to Robert Gupta “music is medicine, music is sanity.” We totally agree! And no, you don’t have to pay for a monthly subscription to make your own playlist. You can just stream it on free music platforms and voila! You get your daily dose of sanity.

7. DECLUTTER

If your budget is tight and can’t donate, just declutter your closet and you’ll find a treasure trove of clothes that you never wear that a family in need will surely appreciate. So, go on and declutter and help put a smile to another person today!

8. WATCH FLICKS

Going to the cinema to watch a movie or two is overrated. Plus, it costs a lot of money! Now that you’re stuck at home, make use of online platforms that stream movies for free. From the classics to the substandard—whatever floats your boat. 

9. SHOP FOR ESSENTIALS

For the time being, only 1 person per household can go out to shop for essentials. So, prepare the grocery and Southstar Drug shopping list for a fast and easy trip outside the house!

This curated list is just a guide to help you get through the rainy days. We hope that you’re well and are doing great at home.

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU!

Share with us your experience with our self-love list during the ECQ!

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CONSTIPATION : CAUSES AND PREVENTION

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Due to lack of awareness on  proper balance diet and exercise needed for an individual to take in a day, lots of health problem are being experienced by majority of the population.  Are you one of them? Are you even aware of some common health problems that might occur once you choose to not live a healthy life?
 
One of the common problems that you might actually experience is the so-called constipation. Constipation usually occurs when you excrete waste less often than normal. Some people have them once to thrice a day while others have them only twice or once a week. So, how about you? When did you have your last bowel movement?  
 
According to the study, going longer more than three or more days without number 2 (pooping)  is already long enough to face a greater chance that your feces or stool becomes harder; It will make feces difficult to pass through  and this is how constipation attacks. Let’s talk about some possible matters that may lead you for being constipated.

  1.  Not drinking enough water and not eating foods rich in fiber such as fruits, vegetables, cereals and wholemeal bread. This is actually the common cause of experiencing one;
  2. Lack of exercise;
  3. Resisting  yourself the urge to have a bowel movement;
  4. Taking some medications especially strong pain drugs such as narcotics, antidepressants, or iron pills which might be having a side effects;
  5. According to the study one out of five pregnant women will become constipated due to the hormonal changes that slow down the gut movements;
  6. When you have changed something in your usual activities or diet;
  7. Stress can actually cause constipation too.

Symptoms of constipation includes having bowel movement troubles. Second is you feel like that there’s a blockage in your rectum that prevents your stools to come out. Third, it feels like you can not completely empty your stool from your rectum that you think you might be needing some help to do it such as using your hands to empty your abdomen and using your finger to remove your stool from your rectum.

 There are some of the easy steps that will help you ease or prevent constipation in the first place:

  • Eat foods that are rich in fiber such as fruits, vegetables, cereals and wholemeal breads or pasta;
  • Drink plenty of water at least eight to ten cups a day. Water help softens your stools;
  • Exercise regularly if possible
  •  Don’t try to ignore the need of using the toilet. Some people choose to suppress the feeling of using the toilet probably because they are busy which in the end will make them regret suppressing it because of the consequences that will possibly occur.

At the end of the day, it’s a choice to live a healthy life. Seek your doctor if it’s necessary. Have a regular check-up. It’s gonna be way better to enjoy waking up and eating delicious foods without worrying about bowel movement problems.

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