3 Daily Tips for Heart Health

#heartmonth #hearthealth

You're never too old (or too young!) to take care of your heart.

To wrap up National Heart month, we’d like to share this short list of tips to care for your heart every day:

1. Get aerobic exercise. Walk, run, bike or swim- it’s all good for your heart. Aerobic exercise benefits you by maximizing the amount of oxygen in your blood and increasing blood flow to you muscles. Aim for 30 minutes of aerobic exercise per day. If you’re a beginner, start small. Begin with 10 – 15 minutes per day, and work your way up to 30 as you start to feel more energized.

2. Consume healthy fats. Load up on omega-3 fatty acids, which can help reduce triglyceride levels and support heart health. Omega-3s can be found in salmon, mackerel and other cold water fish. Try serving fish twice per week in place of your regular entrée. Also, consider taking a professional grade omega-3 supplement to add more healthy fatty acids to your diet. Click here for more information about omega-3 fatty acids.

3. Get enough sleep. According to the American Heart Association, poor sleep habits are linked to an increase in high blood pressure, which could cause heart disease. The average person needs 6-8 hours of sleep per night. Kids need more sleep, and seniors may need less.

While this list is far from complete, these 3 tips for heart health can help start you down the path toward a healthier heart. Check with your healthcare provider for a personalized heart health plan.

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CoQ10: Protect Your Heart!

Heart Month wear red day CoQ10

Some medications deplete coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) from your body. Fight back with a high-quality CoQ10 supplement.

Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is a naturally occurring compound found in every cell of the body. It plays a critical role in:

  • Energy production
  • Antioxidant defense
  • Heart support
  • Nerve protection
  • Reducing inflammation
  • Healthy cell growth

Our muscles use a lot of energy, and they need a lot of CoQ10 to function. But did you know that some medications deplete CoQ10 from the body? Common culprits include:

  • Some blood pressure medications
  • Cholesterol-reducing medications

People who take cardiac medications or statins to lower their cholesterol often experience muscle cramping and weakness due to CoQ10 depletion. CarePro pharmacists can help you find a CoQ10 supplement that is right for you – just ask!

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Benefits of Eating Dark Chocolate

dark chocolate antioxidants vegetables

Dark chocolate contains antioxidants, which are also found in fruits and vegetables.

Dark chocolate is a rich, decadent treat that has heart-healthy benefits (if eaten in moderation). Here are a few perks of eating dark chocolate:

Antioxidants:  These little friends help your body fend off “free radicals” (harmful elements formed by normal body processes and your environment). They help prevent damage to your cells and promote overall health, like helping to keep bad cholesterol from blocking your arteries.

Flavonoids:  These chemicals are found naturally in plants, such as fruits and vegetables. They provide antioxidant protection and help repair damage to your cells.

Moderation is the key. One ounce of dark chocolate (think the size of a matchbook) a few times a week is enough to satisfy your sweet tooth and provide an antioxidant boost. Just remember to include plenty of vegetables and fruits in your diet- they’re naturally rich in antioxidants.

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Healthy Fats Can Boost Your Health

CarePro Advance Omega omega-3 fish oil supplement

CarePro Advance Omega helps keep your cell membranes functional and healthy.

Fat = bad, right? WRONG! There are many kinds of fats, and not all of them are bad. Omega-3 fatty acids, for example, are not only healthy to eat, but they are also vital to healthy cell function.

“Essential fatty acids” like omega-3s are found in all the cell membranes in your body, and they play a major role in how well your cell membranes work. The type of fat you consume determines the type of fat in your cell membranes. If you consume too much of the wrong kinds of fat (like saturated fat, cholesterol or trans fatty acids), your cell membranes will not work like they should.

Your body does not manufacture its own essential fatty acids, so you must ingest them. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids include flax seed, chia seeds, wild-caught salmon, sardines, anchovies, mackerel and tuna.  But what if you don’t care for seeds or seafood? You can get the proper amount of omega-3 fatty acids by taking a supplement like CarePro Advance Omega, a fish oil supplement. If you consume a healthy amount of essential fatty acids (1500 – 2000mg), your cells will work better, and you will be healthier.

Omega-3 fatty acids have many other health benefits, like improving your hormone function and reducing inflammation. Contact your CarePro pharmacist for more information about how omega-3 fatty acids can help you live a healthier life.

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Relief from Painful UTIs

CarePro pharmacist local supplements expert

Lucinda Harms is one of CarePro's pharmacists who specialize in helping patients feel better.

Sam, a CarePro Pharmacy patient, shares how taking supplements changed not only her health, but also her life:

“For the past 6 years, I have had at least 2 urinary tract infections (UTIs) every month. I couldn’t stop them with anything I tried, even doctors’ suggestions. But, since I came to see pharmacist Lucinda Harms (CarePro Advance Health) about 3 months ago, I haven’t had a single UTI!

Lucinda recommended that I take 2 Fem-Dophilus and 2 Cranberry/d-Mannose supplements per day. I have also started taking 5000 IU of vitamin D and 1 Vital-10 probiotic a day. This is the longest I have gone without a UTI in 6 years. I have saved probably $350 in medical bills (copays and medical charges) in the past 2-3 months. I keep close track of the money that I spend on medical bills, and I have been surprised to have saved so much.

This has been a real life changer for me. I thought that there would be no changing the UTIs for the rest of my life; that I would have to just deal with them and take antibiotics forever. My mood has improved and I have a better overall heath. My doctor has even commented on the changes and overall heath improvements. With the help of the supplements, I have made a 180 degree turn around. I have a better outlook on life as a whole!”

Your health needs are as unique as you are, and CarePro pharmacists are here to help you feel better. Please feel free to call or stop by if you have questions about supplements or your medications.

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Boost Your Immune System with Probiotics

probiotics immune system digestion GI tract

Probiotics help boost your immune system by increasing good bacteria and decreasing bad bacteria.

Did you know that as much as 80% of your immune system is based in your digestive tract? Give your immune system a boost by taking probiotics daily. They can help reduce the number, severity and duration of colds, flu and other respiratory ailments you’ll have to deal with this winter.

Probiotics help by increasing the amount of “friendly” bacteria that are found naturally in your digestive tract. Friendly bacteria crowd out “bad” bacteria and prevent it from multiplying (which can make you sick). Probiotics also strengthen your body’s ability to suppress inflammation, which causes swelling, soreness and discomfort throughout the body.

The best (and easiest) way to get the probiotics you need is to take a high quality probiotic supplement. CarePro Pharmacies and CarePro Advance Health are featuring probiotics at 20% off for the month of January 2015.

CarePro carries probiotics for infants and children. There are many dosage forms, including chewables, liquids, powders and capsules. Connect with your CarePro pharmacist if you have questions about how probiotics can help you stay healthy this winter.

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Are You Looking for an Event Speaker?

CarePro event speaker presenter free

Lucinda Harms (pictured) and Shauna Hickey, two pharmacists from CarePro, are happy to speak to your organization free of charge.

Are you tired of the same boring presentations at your group or committee meetings? Are you scrambling to find an event speaker with fresh, relevant information?

Don’t worry- CarePro Compounding and CarePro Advance Health pharmacists are happy to speak to your group or organization at no charge! Our team is knowledgeable in a wide variety of topics, such as supplements for weight loss, advancements in hormone replacement therapy and strategies for living gluten-free. Our pharmacists can also share information on the many uses of compounded prescriptions, including the many treatment options available for animals.

CarePro pharmacists love connecting with people in our community, and they enjoy answering your questions. There is so much information (and misinformation) to sift through in the world of pharmacy, and it’s important to our pharmacists that you have information available to make educated decisions about nutrition and treatment options. Our pharmacists are ready to share their expertise with your organization.

If you have a specific topic you’re interested in, or if you aren’t sure where to start, connect with CarePro Compounding or CarePro Advance Health. We’re happy to help you narrow down a topic that fits your organization’s interests. Follow Compounding and Advance Health on Facebook to see new products and learn more about our services and events.

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Folic Acid- What, Why and How

spinach kale folic acid folate supplement

Broccoli is a good food source of folate, but you may benefit from a high quality folic acid supplement.

Folic acid is famous for its benefits to babies in the womb- it helps prevent many birth defects, like spina bifida (incomplete formation of the spine). What you may not know is that folic acid is important for all people to take, regardless of sex or age.

Folic acid is a B vitamin, and it supports your health in a variety of ways. For example, folic acid helps your body build new cells. Cell building is a constant process happening within your hair, skin and fingernails (which are frequently damaged by cosmetics and our environments). Folic acid also helps keep your blood healthy- you may develop anemia (a low red blood cell count) if you don’t get enough folic acid.

Another surprising fact about folic acid is that the medications you take may deplete folic acid from your body. If you are on a medication for Rheumatoid arthritis, seizures or Type 2 diabetes (just to name a few), you should consider taking a folic acid supplement to replace what you lose. If you drink more than one alcoholic beverage per day, or if you have celiac disease, you may also be at risk for folic acid depletion.

You can increase your daily folic acid intake by including leafy green vegetables (like kale, broccoli and spinach), whole grains and beans in your diet. Look for “vitamin B9” on the nutrition labels of food items to see if they’re enriched with folic acid. You may find it difficult to get all the nutrients you need from food alone because of your schedule, health or food choices. That’s when high quality supplements come in handy. Call, email or visit CarePro Advance Health or your local CarePro Pharmacy. Our expert pharmacists can help you find a folic acid supplement to fit your lifestyle and dietary needs.

Sources: http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/folicacid/index.html; http://www.womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/fact-sheet/folic-acid.html

Posted in A Avenue Pharmacy, Advance Health, CarePro Healthy Living, CarePro Pharmacy, CarePro at the Pavilion, Compounding Pharmacy, Fifth Avenue Pharmacy, Health Risk Management, Liberty Pharmacy, Shepley Pharmacy, Tipton Pharmacy | Leave a comment

Get Moving to Feel Better

exercise walking accountability motivated friend buddy

Grab a friend or family member and get moving! Just 30 minutes a day can help improve your mood.

Feeling stressed and out of energy this December? A little exercise may be just what you need to kick your winter funk.

When you exercise, your brain releases chemicals that help you feel happier and more relaxed. Exercising regularly also helps improve your muscle strength and increase your endurance. That means you’ll be able to work or play longer and enjoy it more after you get into a regular exercise plan.

However, you don’t have to haul yourself to the gym alone to get in a decent workout. Invite a friend as an exercise buddy- it’s a great way to stay accountable, and you’ll be less likely to skip a workout if your friend is counting on you to come along.

Here are a few ideas to get moving while remaining social:

  • Take a nightly walk with your kids or pet
  • Go for a jog with your spouse a few times per week
  • Sign up for a spin or yoga class with a friend
  • Throw a leaf raking party with the whole family

A minimum of 30 minutes of exercise per day can help you feel more energized, refreshed and focused. With the holidays approaching fast, you’re going to need that extra energy. Check out the CarePro Worksite Wellness page on Facebook for fun workout ideas and tips to help you stay motivated.

Remember:  exercise shouldn’t feel like a chore. Find an activity you and your exercise buddy enjoy, and get active!

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On the Road Again: Managing Diabetes While Traveling

family travel with diabetes

With a little planning, travelling with diabetes can be fun for the whole family.

Traveling with diabetes can be difficult, but a little planning will ease your mind and make the trip more enjoyable.

Before you leave, see your doctor to make sure your numbers are under control. While you’re there, ask your doctor for the following items:

  • A letter that explains what you need to do for your diabetes and all the equipment you use to manage it (diabetes pills, insulin, syringes, monitors, etc.)
  • A prescription for your insulin or diabetes pills just in case
  • A complete list of your medications, as well as a list of items to which you are allergic (foods, medications, etc.)

It’s a good idea to pack extra supplies in case of emergency or an extended trip. If you are flying, check with the airline before your trip to ensure that you pack your supplies and medication properly. Pack some of your supplies in your carry-on bag in case you become separated from your luggage.

For more information on traveling with diabetes, check out the American Diabetes Association website or connect with the staff at your local CarePro Pharmacy. We’re always happy to help you get the answers you need.

It’s hard enough to pack for a trip without having to prepare for the complications that may arise when you have diabetes.

Posted in A Avenue Pharmacy, CarePro Healthy Living, CarePro Home Care, CarePro Home Medical, CarePro Pharmacy, CarePro at the Pavilion, Diabetes Education, Fifth Avenue Pharmacy, Health Risk Management, Home Health, Liberty Pharmacy, Shepley Pharmacy, Tipton Pharmacy | 1 Comment